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A History of Rice University 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

Lyrasis IVIembers and Sloan Foundation 

A Rice University Studies Special Publication 

ri5 -^^, 



Rice University 

The Institute Years, 1907- 1963 


Published in cooperation with the Rice University Historical Commission 
Rice University Studies • Houston, Texas 

© 1982 by Rice University 

All rights reserved 

Printed in the United States of America 

First Edition, 1982 

All photographs are from the collections of the 

Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, 

Rice University, except the following: 

Fig. 1. Houston Metropolitan Research Center, 

Houston Public Library 

Requests for permission to reproduce material from this work 

should be addressed to 

Rice University Studies, P. O. Box 1892, 

Rice University, Houston, Texas 77251. 

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 82-82825 

ISBN 0-89263-250-X 

10 987654321 

To the memory of 

William Marsh Rice, Edgar Odell Lovett, 

and all the men and women who 

have contributed to the building of 

Rice University 


Illustrations ix 
Foreword xi 
Preface xiii 
Acknowledgments xvii 



The Board of Trustees 14 
Defining the Rice Institute 15 
The Search for a President 16 
Edgar Odell Lovett 20 
Structuring the Institute 22 
The Site and the 

Physical Plan 25 
The First Buildings 29 
Construction Begins 42 


Selecting the Faculty 44 
The Classes Begin 47 
The Position of Women 49 
Early Campus Life 50 
Further Faculty 

Appointments 56 
Other Changes 60 

Administration and 

Curriculum 60 
The First Library 64 
Public Lectures 65 
Early Achievements and 

Problems 66 


Military Life on Campus 71 
Tape and the Student 

Rebellion 74 
The Students' Army Training 

Corps 81 
The Campus Returns to 

Normal 82 
Public Reaction to Rice 

Professors 83 

THE 1920s 88 

Two Solutions to 

Overcrowding 88 
Other Solutions 92 
The Institute's Financial 

Condition 94 

Rice Faculty in the 1920s 95 
Visiting Lecturers 98 
Curriculum 102 
A Change in Athletics 102 
Aspects of Student Life 108 
Hazing and Social Clubs 113 
Alumni Activities and 

National Associations 117 


depression: the 1930s 119 
A Move to Reduce Expenses 120 
Additional Revenues 121 
Changes in the Faculty 122 
A Question of Tenure 123 
Some Memorable Professors 124 
More Visiting Lecturers 125 
Only a Few Building 

Projects 125 
Hazing and Other Student 

Activities 127 
Athletics — The Golden Age 129 
The Distant Thunder of 

World Events 132 


THE 1940s 134 

War Affects the Campus 134 
Important Changes During the 

War Years 135 
Postwar Changes 136 
The Trustees' Long-Range 

Plan 140 
A President to Succeed 

Edgar O. Lovett 141 
President Houston Takes 

Office 143 
Changes in Curriculum 

and Admissions 147 
Changes in Faculty and 

Physical Plant 149 
Student Concerns 157 
Student Activities in the 

1940s 162 

THE 1950s 168 

Reorganizing the Board 168 

A New Emphasis on Fund 

Raising 169 
Grown h in the 

Administration 170 
New Faces on the Faculty 172 
The ig^os Building Boom 173 
The Residential College 

System 178 
Academic Difficulties 188 
A New Attitude Among 

Students 190 
A Lighter View of Campus 

Life 193 
The i9<,os in Summary 195 


Changing the Institute's 

Name 196 
A Change in Presidents 197 
The Move to Charge Tuition 200 
President Pitzer's Long-Range 

Plan 202 

Further Changes in the 

Curriculum 205 
Admissions Procedures 206 
The "Rice Myth " 207 
Student Activities 209 


Notes 219 
Bibliography 237 
Index 241 


1. Downtown Houston, 
1915 I 2 

2. Visitors to the opening 
ceremonies I 3 

3. Academic procession at the 
opening ceremonies I 5 

4. South Hall and the 
Commons I 6 

5. Henry Van Dyke reading the 
inaugural poem I 7 

6. Faculty Chamber, 1912 I 8 

7. Approach to the Administra- 
tion Building I 9 

8. William Marsh Rice I 12 

9. The fraudulent will / 13 

10. The first Board of 
Trustees / 14 

11. Edgar Odell Lovett I 20 

12. Ralph Adams Cram I 26 

13. The final architectural 
plan / 29 

14. Early construction of the 
Administration Building I 30 

15. William Ward Watkin I 30 

16. Mid-construction of the 
Administration Building / 30 

17. The Administration Build- 
ing nearly completed I 30 

18. The finished building / 31 

19. View through the 
Sallyport / 32 

20. The completed Faculty 
Chamber 733 

21. President Lovett' s 
office / ^4. 

22. Boys' study I 35 

23. Third floor classroom / 36 

24. Mechanical Engineering 
Laboratory construction I t,G 

25. Completed laboratory 
building / 37 

26. Commons dining 
room / 38 

27. Commons kitchen 739 

28. Darwin I 40 

29. DeLesseps I 40 

30. Thucydides I 40 

31. Plaque dedicated to 
science 741 

32. Plaque dedicated to 
art / 41 

33. Laying the cornerstone I 42 

34. The cornerstone 
inscription I 42 

35. The first faculty I 46 

36. Registration Day, 1912 I 47 

37. The Owl Literary 
Society 751 

38. The Elizabeth Baldwin Lit- 
erary Society 751 

39. The Rice Institute Engi- 
neering Society 752 

40. The Women's Tennis 
Club I 52 

41. Football team, 191 2 I 54 

42. Football team, 19 13 755 

43. Sammy I 56 

44. Baseball team, 1913 I 56 

45. An early track team 756 

46. Harold A. Wilson I 57 

47. Percy /. Daniell 7 57 

48. Julian S. Huxley / S7 

49. Arthur L. Hughes / S7 

50. Stockton Axson I 58 

51. Albert L. Guerard I 58 

52. Radoslav A. Tsanoff I 58 

53. Claude Heaps 759 

54. Harry B. Weiser 759 

55. Samuel G. McCann 759 

56. Alice Crowell Dean and 
Sara Stratford I 64 

57. The first library I 66 

58. Academic procession, first 
commencement I 67 

59. Conferring of degrees 7 68 

60. Company A, Cadet 
Corps / 71 

61. Company B, Cadet 
Corps / ji 

62. Infantry life, 1917 I 72 

63. "B.V.D. Co." I 73 

64. The women's cadet corps, 
1917 I 74-75 

65. Cartoon and poem of cav- 
alry life 7 76 

66. Tape 7 78-79 

67. The Students' Army Train- 
ing Corps 7 81 

68. The case of Lyford P. 
Edwards 7 86 

69. Aerial photograph. Admin- 
istration Building I 89 

70. Aerial photograph, Autry 
House I 89 

71. Aerial photograph, resi- 
dential halls I 90 

72. Exterior of Chemistry 
Building / 91 

73. Carving on capital. Chem- 
istry Building I 91 

74. Industrial laboratory I 92 


75. Individual laboiatory I 92 

76. Main dispensing room 793 

77. Lecture hall, Chemistry 
Building / 93 

78. French educational 
mission I 97 

79. "Pershing Day," 1920 I 98 

80. General Pershing I 99 

81. Sir Henry Jones / 100 

82. Laying cornerstone for Co- 
hen House / loi 

83. Rendering of Cohen 
House / loi 

84. Rice vs. Arkansas, 
igrg I 103 

85. Pep Parade / 103 

86. ]ohn W Heisman / 104 

87. Golf team, 1930 I 107 

88. Laying cornerstone for Au- 
try House / 109 

89. Autry House /no 

90. First May Fete king and 
queen /in 

91. First Archi-Arts Ball / 1 1 1 

92. The Rice Owl, Apr. 
1924 / 1 12 

93. The Rice Owl, Dec. 
1924 / 113 

94. First Rice Engineering 
Show program / 114 

95. First Slime Nightshirt 
Parade / 116 

96. Installation of Phi Beta 
Kappa I 111 

97. Sarah Lane I 122 

98. Statue of William Marsh 
Rice / 126 

99. May Fete, 1938 I 128 

100. Football team, 
1937-38 I 130 

loi. Basketball game, 

1935 I 131 

102. £. Y. Steakley track 
star I 132 

103. Tennis team, 1938 I 132 

104. Golf team, 1939 I 133 

105. Purchase of Rincon Oil 
Field / 138 

106. William Vennillion 
Houston / 144 

107. Renaming Administration 
Building "Lovett Hall" I 145 

108. Construction of Fondren 
Library, June 1947 / 151 

109. Construction of Fondren 
Library, April 1948 I 151 

no. Construction of Fondren 
Library, July 1948 I 151 

111. Circulation area / 152 

112. Lecture Lounge / i^i 

113. Music and Arts 
Lounge / 1 5 2 

114. Construction of Anderson 
Hall, Nov. 1946 I 154 

115. Construction of Anderson 
Hall, July 1947 / 154 

116. Construction of Anderson 
Hall, Dec. 1947 / 154 

117. Groundbreaking for Aber- 
crombie Lab I 155 

118. Aerial view of 
construction / 155 

1 19. The completed Abercrom- 
bie Lab / 155 

120. "Uncle Jupe" / 156 

121. Interior of Abercrombie 
Lab / 157 

122. Construction of new Rice 
Stadium / 158 

123. Completed stadium with 
Jess Neely I 158-59 

124. Cheerleaders, 1946 I 162 

125. Rice vs. Texas A&^M, 
1946 I 165 

126. Rice vs. Texas A&^M. 
1948 I 165 

127. Freshman track team, 
1947—48 I 166 

128. Carey Croneis / 172 

129. Van de Graaff 
accelerator / 174 

130. Keith-Wiess Geological 
Lab I 175 

131. Construction of Hamman 
Hall / 175 

132. Hamman Hall, nearly 
completed I 176 

133. Plans for Rice Memorial 
Student Center I 176 

134. Construction of student 
center / 177 

135. Bookstore, student 
center / 177 

136. Banks Street 
apartments I 182 

137. Construction of Jones 
College / 183 

138. Dormitory group I 184 

139. Wiess College / 185 

140. Rice Exposition, 

I9S4 I 193 

141. Football team, 

I9S3-54 I 194 

142. Football team, 
1957-58 I 194 

143. Basketball team. 

1953-54 I 195 

144. Kenneth Sanborn 
Pitzer / 199 

145. Rayzor Hall 
construction I 205 

146. Rondelet, 1962-63 I 209 

147. Will Rice Chorus, 
1962-63 I 210 

148. President Eisenhower's 
i960 visit /ill 

149. President Kennedy's 1962 
visit / 212 

150-155. Semicentennial and 
installation of Pitzer I 214-215 


This history of Rice University 
during its first fifty years is 
largely the product of the inspira- 
tion and hard work of a Rice 
alumnus, Willoughby Williams 
(Rice '39). Willoughby, a long- 
time staunch supporter of Rice, 
was one of the primary forces m 
an earlier project that brought to 
publication William Marsh Rice 
and His Institute, a volume 
based on the work of historian 
Andrew Forest Muir and edited 
by Sylvia Morris. That book de- 
rived to a considerable extent 
from an existing manuscript that 
had been prepared by Muir before 
his death. Work on a history of 
the university loomed as a much 
larger project, since materials and 
oral histories would have to be 
compiled from scratch. To Wil- 
loughby, ably seconded by Ray 
Watkin Hoagland (Rice '36) and a 
group of other interested individ- 
uals, time was critical. Many of 
the early records of the university 
had already been lost beyond re- 
covery, and much that was avail- 
able only in the memories of 
early faculty and graduates would 
soon be gone. If a history of the 
early years of the university was 
to be written, it had to be done 
without delay. 

Willoughby began to organize 
support, and the Rice University 

Historical Commission was 
formed in 1975 with H. Malcolm 
Lovett (Rice '21) as chairman. I 
agreed to direct the project with 
the advice of historian and pro- 
vost Frank E. Vandiver and archi- 
vist Nancy Boothe Parker (Rice 
'52). Willoughby Williams, aided 
by Malcolm Lovett and Ray 
Hoagland (and later by E. [oe 
Shimek, Rice '29, and John B. 
Coffee, Rice '34), spearheaded the 
money-raising aspects of the 
work, and a three-year project 
was organized to survey the ex- 
isting records, recover what was 
possible of the early material, in- 
terview key figures, and write the 
history of Rice from its founding 
through 1962-63, the year of the 
semicentennial celebrating the 
opening of Rice in 1912. This 
work would not have been possi- 
ble without Willoughby Wil- 
liams, Joe Shimek, and all those 
individuals who contributed 
money and time in support of our 

This history has been written 
in order to recapture as accu- 
rately as possible the story of the 
planning and dedication, as well 
as the working out in practice, of 
the ideas of a group of men de- 
voted to creating an educational 
institution worthy of the trust 
evinced by William Marsh Rice 

when in 1891 he drew up an in- 
denture containing the outlines 
for the institution he intended to 
endow. The goals of William 
Marsh Rice himself, of the mem- 
bers of the first Board of Trust- 
ees, and of Edgar Odell Lovett, 
the first president of the univer- 
sity, provided the guidelines by 
which the institution gradually 
worked out its organization and 
plans for the future. 

Although Rice University (of- 
ficially Rice Institute throughout 
most of the time covered by this 
history) is the central focus of 
this book. Rice cannot be re- 
garded as standing in isolation 
from the rest of the world of uni- 
versity education. If in these 
pages it sometimes appears that 
Rice faced unusual financial 
problems during the Great De- 
pression, we should remember 
that those problems were dif- 
ferent only in detail from prob- 
lems facing every institution of 
higher learning at the time; if 
Rice faced problems reestablish- 
ing its educational image follow- 
ing the conclusion of World War 
II, so also did every other univer- 
sity worthy of the name. The 
world of education is not static. 
William Marsh Rice himself had 
experienced some feeling of this 
in the gradual shift of his goal 


from endowing an orphans' tech- 
nical school to endowing an in- 
stitution of higher learning for 
the advancement of science, liter- 
ature, and art. Likewise the ideas 
of the members of the Board of 
Trustees expanded and developed 
through their years of grappling 
with the problems of freeing the 
endowment of entanglements, of 
searching for a president for the 
new institution, and of working 
with a series of notable univer- 
sity presidents, beginning with 

the first, Edgar Odell Lovett, in 
setting goals for the university 
and striving to attain those goals 
in practice. 

Our author, Fredericka Meiners 
(Rice '63), who holds the Ph.D. in 
history, is well trained for her 
task, and she has worked long 
and hard to portray this history 
of Rice as accurately as possible. 
Of course, since she is a Rice 
alumna, she cannot be un- 
biased — no alumnus is. The great 
majority of students who have 

attended Rice have loved the 
place — for its weaknesses as well 
as for its strengths. Miss Meiners 
is no exception. Hers is an honest 
representation based on a great 
deal of work and a careful sifting 
of the source material available. I 
hope that you like it — I too am 
an alum. 

Katherine Fischer Drew '44 


Students at Rice learn slowly 
about the history of the univer- 
sity. During freshman orientation 
they hear the story of the found- 
er's murder. They tour the cam- 
pus and begin to appreciate the 
buildings and their often whimsi- 
cal decorations. Tales of pro- 
fessors or past events are passed 
down through the student grape- 
vine, and traditions are main- 
tained, although even those 
change with time. A professor 
may relate a story from the "good 
old days" some fifteen or twenty 
years agO; the student newspaper, 
the Thresher, may reprint an 
item from an early edition, ex- 
plain the evolution of the college 
court system, or describe the de- 
velopment of the spring festival, 
Rondelet, and its component 
Beer-Bike Race. An alumnus may 
ask a current student how things 
are going and then start reminis- 
cing with the ominous words, 
"Now, when I was at Rice, it was 
really hard." Through these 
sources students gain a piece- 
meal knowledge of the past, lore 
that often has little meaning for 
present residents of Rice, who are 
naturally more interested in the 
university as they experience it. 
It is the view of Rice that one 
absorbs as a student that tends to 
stick in the mind and that often 

leads to the assumption that Rice 
is unchanging. Only by active, 
prolonged involvement with the 
university, its faculty, and its stu- 
dents does an alumnus really see 
changes taking place withm the 

My original view of Rice was 
as an undergraduate coming to 
the campus in 1959 (when it was 
still the Rice Institute). After 
staying for an additional year be- 
yond my B.A. in 1963 to earn a 
teaching certificate, I left to 
teach in public school. I retained 
some of my ties on campus and 
read about events there, and 
when I returned to Rice in 1970 
for graduate work, I did not ex- 
pect much difficulty in adapting 

What I found, however, was a 
university much changed. It was 
bigger: more buildings, more stu- 
dents, more professors, more 
courses. There was an admin- 
istrative bureaucracy. The feeling 
was more impersonal; gone were 
the days when everyone knew al- 
most everyone else on campus. 
There was also somehow a dif- 
ferent atmosphere, a more re- 
laxed, less pressure-filled exis- 
tence for the undergraduates. 
Perhaps this was due to the 
changed curriculum. Every other 
undergraduate seemed to be a 

"double major," a difficult status 
to obtain in my previous student 
days because of all the specific 
courses required. There were also 
many smaller changes. No longer 
were women plagued with the 
regulation against wearing pants 
m the library. The Chemistry 
Lecture Hall was air-conditioned 
and sported upholstered seats. 
Freshmen were downright pam- 
pered during orientation week, 
and liquor could be served on 

Even with the changes, how- 
ever. Rice was recognizable to a 
graduate of 1963. Some of the old 
student irreverence toward the 
place lingered, much softened 
and showing up hilariously in 
the performances of the MOB 
(Marching Owl Band). A great 
deal of pressure remained. Stu- 
dents still found it difficult to ex- 
plain what Rice was really like to 
their friends who had gone to 
other schools. That particular 
brand of self-deprecating arro- 
gance and snobbishness was still 
manifest, now in T-shirt inscrip- 
tions: "I go to Rice, I must be 
smart." The college system was 
stronger than ever, as were the 
perennial complaints about the 
college food service. And even 
without a speaker at commence- 
ment, Rice managed a satisfying 


spectacle with flags flying, the 
traditional simple ceremony, and 
attention where it belonged: on 
the graduates. 

When I returned to Rice m 
1976 to write its history, I knew 
that change and development 
would be one of my major 
themes, as it is for almost any 
history. At the same time I knew 
that there were several different 
perceptions of that change that I 
would have to explore. The Board 
of Governors had one perspective 
on the Institute, the faculty an- 
other, the students still another, 
and the outside world yet a dif- 
ferent one. My main areas for 
concern would be the board's ac- 
tions, usually involving finances, 
construction, and presidential 
searches; the university admin- 
istration's decisions and actions 
relating to a wide range of sub- 
jects; and faculty actions and 
changes. Curriculum develop- 
ments would be important be- 
cause they would show what 
kind of education Rice offered its 
students and hence what kind of 
university program its presidents 
and faculty envisioned. I would 
also want to report on student 
life, from student associations to 
hazing, from special campus 
events to routine occurrences, 
from the trials of athletic teams 
to student attitudes toward Rice 
in general. 

Since it is impossible to name 
every person of prominence on 
campus and to tell every story, I 
knew I would have to limit my 
coverage of this area to firsts 
(such as the first May Fete queen 
and king), to stories involving 

many people, and to ongoing 
events and traditions, hoping to 
evoke memories in the minds of 
alumni while describing student 
life sufficiently for nonalumni to 

As I began to explore the 
sources it became clear that I 
could not organize the story 
around a series of chapters deal- 
ing with single topics, such as 
one chapter on all the board deci- 
sions and another on curriculum 
development. Each topic was tied 
to the others, so interlocked that 
telling each separately would 
make the story incomprehen- 
sible. So I have told the story 
chronologically. After a synopsis 
of the events leading to the 
founding of the Institute, Wil- 
liam Marsh Rice's murder, and 
actions settling the murder case 
and Rice's will, this history be- 
gins with receipt of the endow- 
ment by the board in 1907. It 
ends with the semicentennial 
year, 1962-63. This is a conve- 
nient stopping point for a variety 
of reasons. Up to that time, even 
considering the growth of the In- 
stitute after World War II and per- 
haps despite the change m stu- 
dent attitudes in the 19SOS, Rice 
history seems a coherent fabric. 
During the 1960s, partly through 
President Pitzer's expansion pro- 
gram, partly because of the tur- 
moil and changes in American 
society as a whole, the Rice that 
emerged was not the same, in 
real and in subtle ways. 

To tell the later story would 
greatly lengthen the time needed 
for research and writing and 
would involve events too recent 

for us to have developed a histor- 
ical perspective. Furthermore, it 
was a problem to decide where to 
stop if I continued past 1963. I 
did not find it sensible to end 
with Kenneth Pitzer's departure, 
or Frank E. Vandiver's acting 
presidency, or Norman Hacker- 
man's arrival; either too much 
was still unsettled at each of 
these points, or my history 
would seem just to meander to a 
close. By stopping in 1963 I could 
include the name change from 
Institute to University, introduce 
the new president and his plans, 
use the formal opening and the 
semicentennial as stylistic book- 
ends, and finish optimistically. 
Sources for the history up to 
1963 were not as plentiful as I 
had hoped. The most important 
were the collection of Presidents' 
Papers, other collections such as 
the Watkin Papers, copies of Rice 
publications, and various ar- 
tifacts in the Woodson Research 
Center of Fondren Library, where 
the archives of the university are 
located. These documents did not 
satisfy my historian's curiosity. 
As a private institution in a time 
of little regulation by any outside 
entity, the Institute was not ob- 
liged to keep many records. The 
only office that could be counted 
on to have its records intact was 
that of the registrar. The Presi- 
dents' Papers are full of lacunae: 
in some instances no memoranda 
were kept (if they were ever writ- 
ten), papers were lost in floods or 
were simply cleaned out of the 
files and thrown away when the 
relevant matters were settled. 
Rice was a small communitv, and 


much of its business was trans- 
acted by one person who con- 
sulted another, arrived at a 
decision, and implemented it 
without recording it. No Deans' 
Papers exist for the first fifty 
years, except for a few letters and 
some other information from 
Dean Cameron's tenure in the 
I9SOS. The minutes of the fac- 
ulty have been preserved and 
were quite valuable in tracing 
curriculum development. The 
minutes of the Board of Gover- 
nors are complete in the trea- 
surer's office, but the correspon- 
dence files are nearly empty for 
the years before 1940. Depart- 
mental records simply do not ex- 
ist before the fifties. I was 
surprised to find that for many 
matters I had more information 
on the early days than I did for 
the beginnmg of Pitzer's admin- 
istration. Much of the Pitzer col- 
lection has not yet been carefully 
inventoried; I expect that more 
detailed information from the 
first years of that administration 
will be found in it. 

Fortunately, there are still a 
number of people living who re- 
member the beginnings of the 
school. Or to put it another way, 
as Allie Mae Autry Kellcy did at 
the reunion of the fifty-year 
classes in 1976, "Isn't it wonder- 
ful that so many of us are still 
vertical!" I am indebted to the 
alumni and faculty members 
who were kind enough to share 
their memories. Interviews with 
them were extremely helpful, 
giving me information for which 
there was no other source. Since 
memories are notoriously tricky. 

I have tried not to use informa- 
tion from an interview unless I 
had corroborating evidence from 
another informant or in a writ- 
ten source. The tapes and tran- 
scripts from these interviews will 
be placed in the Woodson Re- 
search Center after the project is 

I have enjoyed looking into the 
past of Rice University. There 
were many outstanding person- 
alities to consider, a few myste- 
ries to unravel, and a number of 
things to learn. Most of my pre- 
conceptions were confirmed, but 
not all. (For example, although 
excellence has always been its 
standard. Rice was never as 
wealthy as legend had painted 
it.) I have met a number of Rice 
graduates and found that, even 
though we are of different genera- 
tions, we speak the same lan- 
guage concerning the univer- 
sity — most of the time. Some of 
my opinions, formed after the 
change I perceive in student atti- 
tudes in the 1950s, are closer to 
those of present students than to 
those of students who graduated 
fifteen years before me. 

I do not envy whoever picks up 
the story from here and has the 
task of describing and explaining 
the 1960s, but I wish that person 
well. I know that he or she will 
enjoy, as I have, being the first on 
the scene to work with all the 
sources, trying to decide what 
really happened and why, while 
attempting to maintain a balance 
between a professional history 
and what might be called a popu- 
lar one. I hope that whoever car- 
ries on the story will be a Rice 

graduate. Rice is not like other 
universities. And all of its alumni 
should rejoice in that fact. 

Fredericka Meiners 
July 1982 


I have many people to thank 
for their help with this history. 
The members of the Rice Histor- 
ical Commission gave both fi- 
nancial and moral support. Their 
interest made it considerably 
easier to get the job done. Kather- 
ine Drew let me work with a 
minimum of interference and a 
maximum of aid. Frank Vandiver 
answered many questions about 
the past and the present, and 
Nancy Parker guided me through 
the archives in the Woodson Re- 
search Center. The staff of the 
center gave much of their time 
and energy to the project and put 
up with me and my assistants at 
the same time. Moira Sullivan, a 
graduate assistant, was indispen- 

sable for her interest and obser- 
vations and for her exhaustive 
inventory of the Presidents' Pa- 
pers. Holly Leitz had to decipher 
my scribblings and produce a 
clean typed copy of the manu- 
script. Elizabeth Williams, Bryan 
Pedeaux, and Ray Watkin Hoag- 
land began the interviews before 
I arrived; they asked all the right 
questions. My editors at Rice 
University Studies, first Kathleen 
Much and then Barbara Burn- 
ham, must be especially com- 
mended for their excellent and 
professional aid. I wish to thank 
especially all the alumni and 
friends of Rice who gave gener- 
ously of their time to be inter- 
viewed. Without them the his- 

tory would have been impossible. 
To the many readers of the man- 
uscript versions, especially Ray 
Hoagland, Eula Goss Winter- 
mann, and H. Malcolm Lovett, I 
wish also to express my apprecia- 
tion for their careful reading and 
valuable suggestions. 



The Opening 

Emblazoned with a silver seal 
and blue ribbon, invitations went 
out in wooden cylinders to the 
leading universities and learned 
societies of the world: the presi- 
dent and trustees of the Rice In- 
stitute request a representative at 
the formal opening of the new 
university in Houston, Texas, on 
October lo, ii, and 12, 1912. 
Replies came from the University 
of Paris, the Royal Society of 
London, the American Philo- 
sophical Society, Harvard, Yale, 
and Princeton, the American So- 
ciety of Civil Engmeers, the Na- 
tional Geographic Society, the 
South African School of Mines 
and Technology, the University of 
the Philippines, and from scores 
of others. They were happy to 
send delegates to the ceremonies 
and wished the Institute well in 
its endeavors.' 

So gathered in Houston a group 
such as few Texans had ever 
seen: mathematicians, biologists, 
physicists, philosophers, poets, 
historians, engineers — illustrious 
scholars, preeminent representa- 

tives of their fields, leaders of 
their own institutions, all arriv- 
ing to celebrate the Institute's 

Situated on a low-lying coastal 
plain fifty miles inland from the 
Gulf of Mexico, Houston was a 
fast-growing adolescent city of 
109,000 in 1912.' Except for the 
port of Galveston, there were no 
large towns for miles around. 
Coming from the northeast, 
many of the visitors might have 
looked upon their trip as some- 
thing of an adventure: Houston 
was not known for its cultural at- 
tractions in 1912, and the very 
word "Texas" conjured visions of 
the wild western frontier. The 
city did offer opportunities, al- 
though they were more financial 
than aesthetic or intellectual. 
The old money came from south- 
ern staples — cotton, cattle, and 
lumber — but recent big oil dis- 
coveries in East Texas and pro- 
duction of sulfur in Brazoria 
County to the south augured well 
for the future. 

At the time of the opening. 

Houston was a commercial town, 
seemingly more interested in the 
advantages of dredging a ship 
channel to the Gulf than in the 
higher aspects of the mind. Of- 
ficial Houston was not blind, 
however, to the attractions that 
might derive from a university. 
One newspaper editor was so 
bold as to declare that the Rice 
Institute would be more valuable 
to Houston than two Panama Ca- 
nals and would add thousands to 
the city's population.' Whether 
Houstonians viewed the addition 
as offering intellectual benefits or 
monetary ones, they turned out 
to give the Institute a rousing 
send-off. City dignitaries at- 
tended all the functions, and 
several clubs opened their doors 
to guests of the Institute. The 
Chamber of Commerce hosted 
one of the breakfasts for the dele- 
gates. Many Houstonians saw 
some part of the ceremonies. 
There was much to see and hear. 

President Edgar Odell Lovett 
and the Board of Trustees under 
the chairmanship of Captain 

The Opening 


I. Main Street, downtown Houston, igis- 

The Opening 

_» "«.' ' 


2. Delegates and visitors to the formal opening ceremonies of the William Marsh Rice Institute, 
Saturday. October 12. 1912. 

James A. Baker had invited and 
assembled an outstanding group 
of scholars. University of London 
professor Sir William Ramsay, a 
Nobel laureate knighted for his 
contributions in chemistry, came 
to speak on the transmutation of 
matter; the eminent botanist 
Hugo de Vries of the University 
of Amsterdam on the biological 
form of transmutation in hered- 

ity; and the historian Rafael Al- 
tamira y Crevea of the University 
of Oviedo, Spain, on the history 
of human progress. The cele- 
brated Emile Borel from the Uni- 
versity of Paris lectured on math- 
ematics, Sir Henry Jones from 
Glasgow discussed philosophy, 
and Vito Volterra, a senator of 
Italy, spoke on mathematics and 
the work of Henri Poincare, who 

had been invited to speak but 
died after preparing his lectures 
for the opening. 

Another group of invited lec- 
turers presented their work by ti- 
tle at the ceremonies, with the 
actual papers being published 
later. Sir John William Mackail of 
London discussed poetry in mod- 
ern life, and Frederik Carl Stor- 
mer from Christiania, Norway, 

The Opening 

wrote on cosmic physics and 
magnetic storms. From Tokyo 
came a paper by Privy Councilor 
Baron Dairoku Kikuchi on the in- 
troduction of western learning 
into Japan. The noted Italian phi- 
losopher and statesman Bene- 
detto Croce wrote on art, and 
Privy Councilor Wilhelm Ost- 
wald from Leipzig, Germany, dis- 
cussed the theory of education. 

Speakers at luncheons, dinners, 
and other gatherings included 
Dean William Francis Magie and 
Professor Edwin Grant Conklin 
of Princeton, President Harry 
Pratt Judson of the University 
of Chicago, Chancellor James 
Hampton Kirkland of Vanderhilt, 
Dean George Gary Comstock of 
the University of Wisconsin, and 
President Samuel Palmer Brooks 
of Baylor University. David Starr 
Jordan of Stanford, Ira Remsen of 
Johns Hopkins, Sidney Edward 
Mezes of the University of Texas, 
David Ross Boyd of the Univer- 
sity of New Mexico, and William 
Trufant Foster of Reed College 
were only a few of the university 
presidents representing their 

In the words of former Rice 
bursar John T. McCants, a "rather 
elaborate" schedule was arranged 
for the guests. His characteriza- 
tion was something of an under- 
statement. President Lovett and 
the board had devised a program 
requiring stamina but also offer- 
ing much entertainment. Thurs- 
day, October lo, and Friday the 
eleventh began with breakfast 
at the best hotel in town, the 
eleven-story Bender. Lectures fol- 
lowed at 10:30 in the Faculty 
Chamber of the Administration 

Building at the Rice Institute. On 
Thursday the mayor and com- 
missioners of Houston invited 
the delegates to lunch at the City 
Auditorium's banquet hall; after- 
wards all returned to the Insti- 
tute for more lectures and an 
informal garden party. Thursday 
evening Hugo de Vries gave a 
popular illustrated lecture en- 
titled "The Ideal of a Naturalist" 
at the Majestic Theater, and Cap- 
tain and Mrs. Baker hosted a re- 
ception at their home. 

Photographs and written ac- 
counts record the celebration. 
Those who knew many of the 
delegates in person or by repu- 
tation found it striking to see 
Ramsay, de Vries, Borel, and the 
others in the middle of a Texas 
prairie, or even in the banquet 
room of the Hotel Bender. The 
English biologist Julian Huxley, 
soon to be an instructor at the 
Institute, was not impressed 
with the speeches of some of the 
Texas politicians, especially that 
of Governor Oscar B. Colquitt, 
who spoke extemporaneously 
about the wonders of Texas. But 
a graceful little address by Dean 
Comstock of Wisconsin more 
than compensated for the gover- 
nor's boasting.^ Colquitt's lun- 
cheon address was one of the first 
in a long line of speeches and lec- 
tures to be heard in the next two 

After the next morning's talks, 
Friday afternoon was filled by a 
luncheon at the Thalian Club 
given by Mr. and Mrs. Jonas 
Shearn Rice at one o'clock, a con- 
cert by the Kneisel Quartet of 
New York at the Majestic at 
three, a garden party given by Mr. 

and Mrs. Edwin Brewington Par- 
ker at five o'clock, and another 
concert by the Kneisel Quartet in 
the Faculty Chamber at eight- 
thirty. Dinner in the Commons 
of the residential hall on campus 
rounded out a busy day. 

By Friday night's dinner, which 
started much later than sched- 
uled, some of the guests were 
feeling the effects of the constant 
activities. The first course, a 
grapefruit filled with a combina- 
tion of potent liquors,' brightened 
the guests' outlook and provided 
some amusement; but afterwards 
the speeches continued. This 
round consisted of responses by 
the principal speakers, toasting 
the new institution in the name 
of various disciplines such as 
mathematics and philosophy. 
After eight such addresses, cut 
short in some cases by the re- 
sponder as he remarked on the 
lateness of the hour, Boston ar- 
chitect Ralph Adams Cram was 
called upon to speak about art. 
Julian Huxley, who was sitting 
next to Lady Ramsay, reported 
that "Cram rose to his feet, pro- 
duced an enormous roll of type- 
script from his pocket and pro- 
ceeded to read implacably on. 
After twenty minutes, the lady 
could stand no more: 'Oh, I am 
so tired! . . . ' she said, and let her 
head fall forward on to her hands 
on the table."' 

Saturday was different; Satur- 
day was special. Tired or not, 
at 9:30 A.M. the delegates and 
guests assembled in academic re- 
galia at the residential hall and 
proceeded to the cloisters of the 
Administration Building for the 
formal dedication of the Insti- 

The Opening 

3. The academic procession at the formal opening ceremonies. The grounds were still under construction, with 
debris scattered in the background. 

tute. A band led the way. Upon 
reaching the Academic Court, 
speakers and board members 
mounted the platform, while del- 
egates took their seats in the 
semicircle of chairs arranged in 

First came a reading from the 
Bible and the singing of "Veni 
Creator Spiritus." Then Henry 
Van Dyke of Princeton read the 
inaugural poem, "Texas, A Dem- 
ocratic Ode," followed by Chief 
Justice Thomas Jefferson Brown 
of the Texas Supreme Court 
speaking on education and the 
state. Thomas Frank Gailor, the 

Episcopal bishop of Tennessee, 
discoursed on education and the 
church. President Lovett then 
had his opportunity to expound 
on the new university's source in 
the legacy of William Marsh 
Rice; its site in the South, m 
Texas, and in Houston; the scope 
of its activity; and its spirit of in- 
quiry, inspiration, and progress. 
A glimpse of the high purpose 
and enthusiastic spirit of adven- 
ture shared by the small group of 
students and faculty at the inau- 
guration could be seen in the ad- 
dress. It reflected the idealistic 
and hopeful attitude of the early 

years of the Rice Institute and 
contained the germ of many 
ideas that, combined, were to 
make Rice unique. In the actual 
address and its expanded version 
published in Volume I, Number i 
of the Rice Institute Pamphlet, 
Lovett spoke of educating an in- 
tellectual elite, of community 
service, an honor system, a colle- 
giate residential system, a broad 
liberal education, and of recog- 
nizing outstanding scholarship 
by awards and financial assis- 
tance. No less important were a 
spirit of independent judgment 
and initiative xn scholarly re- 

The Opening 

4. Delegates and guests proceeding past the new dormitory. South Hall, and the Commons, both still under 

search. The ceremony closed 
with the choir singing the "One 
Hundredth Psalm"; the Reverend 
Dr. Charles Frederic Aked, pas- 
tor of the First Congregational 
Church of San Francisco, pro- 
nounced the benediction. 

After more speeches lunch was 
served in the Commons, and 
there were more congratulatory 
addresses. Another reception fol- 
lowed, this one given by Dr. and 
Mrs. Lovett at the young but ele- 
gant Houston Country Club. 
Then the delegates boarded a spe- 
cial train to Galveston for a sea- 

food supper and overnight ac- 
commodations at the Hotel 
Galvez, without speeches, for a 
change. The special train brought 
everyone back to Houston on 
Sunday for a religious service in 
the City Auditorium with a ser- 
mon by the Reverend Dr. Aked. 
Many Protestant churches in 
Houston omitted their morning 
services so their members could 
join in the dedication.^ 

The formal opening cere- 
monies caused a certain amount 
of disruption in class schedules, 
but for the most part the stu- 

dents were on the outskirts of the 
festivities. They heard some of 
the lectures in the Faculty Cham- 
ber from the small balcony above 
the entrance and were much im- 
pressed by the dignitaries there. 
A number of young men also 
found themselves invited to the 
dinner m the Commons when so 
many tired guests did not come 
that several tables were empty. 
These students devoured every- 
thing from the punch-filled 
grapefruit to dessert — quite a 
meal for brand-new freshmen.' 
Photographs of the events 

The Opening 


5. Professor Henry Van Dyke of Princeton University reading tfie inaugural 
poem, "Texas, A Democratic Ode," which he wrote as part of the formal 
dedication ceremonies. October 12, 1912. 

show a physical plant in an im- 
perfect state. No building was 
finished. Although exteriors were 
presentable, interiors were an- 
other matter. The Faculty Cham- 
ber, a high-ceilinged room ap- 
proximately twenty-seven feet 
wide by eighty feet long, did have 
churchlike pews mstalled along 
each side facing the center aisle 
in the collegiate style; and the 
stage where the lecturers stood 
was in place. The lighting, how- 
ever, consisted of bare bulbs dan- 
gling at the end of long wires 
extending from holes in the ceil- 
ing. Neither the chamber nor the 
Commons was large enough for 
the Saturday convocation, so a 
platform for the speakers was 
erected outside, on the west side 
of the Administration Building. 
The new university's grounds 
look bleak in the black-and- 
white photographs. Construction 
equipment is strewn about in the 
background, and only the large- 
gravel beds for the roads had been 
laid, not the fine-gravel top. Al- 
though trees had been planted to 
line the roadways, one notices 
the street lights first because 
they are considerably taller than 
the trees. Shrubs and hedges had 
also been planted, but their slight 
size and the lack of landscaping 
around the Administration Build- 
ing seem accentuated by potted 
palms and other movable shrub- 
bery placed about the building 
and platform at regular intervals 
for the ceremonies. The view 
from the Administration Building 
was still prairie, and the distance 
between buildings looks greater 
than it actually was because of 
the open spaces. 

The Opening 

-^ -^ ^ 


6. Interior of the Faculty Chamber in the Administration Building. 1912. 

The Opening 

7. Approach to the Admmistration Building from Main Street, showing the Mechanical Laboratory on the right and 
new trees and shrubbery planted along the fence. October 12. 19 12. 

The Opening 

Unfinished buildings and 
grounds did not deter either the 
speakers or the academic pro- 
cession. Even the weather cooper- 
ated to welcome the new Insti- 
tute with benevolence. Thursday 
and Friday were warm, with the 
temperature about ninety de- 
grees; but a breeze helped cool 
the visitors. Evening tempera- 
tures in the low seventies made 
the days bearable. Saturday morn- 
ing's procession also had a breeze 

to help it along, and in the photo- 
graphs some of the delegates ap- 
pear to be in full sail as they 
approach the Administration 

On Sunday afternoon the dele- 
gates, guests, and other partici- 
pants began their trip home, 
leaving the institution of higher 
learning to the members of its 
faculty, who had been much in 
evidence at the exercises, and to 
its first students, who had not.'° 

Indeed, delegates outnumbered 
the stalwart little band of young 
men and women who came to 
the untried school; those guests 
probably thought that the adven- 
ture in Texas was over. But that 
did not matter. The president, 
faculty, and students would have 
the real adventure — beginning 
the William M. Rice Institute. 


The Beginnings 

The Rice Institute had an event- 
ful beginning by any definition. 
Its story opened with Wilham 
Marsh Rice — Massachusetts- 
born merchant, cotton trader, 
businessman — who had made a 
great deal of money in Texas. 
Rice was interested in education 
(his father's interest in it may 
have influenced him) and in 
somehow returning part of his 
wealth to society. By 1880, at the 
age of sixty-three, he was consid- 
ering the establishment of some 
philanthropic enterprise to be the 
beneficiary of his millions. His 
first wife, Margaret Bremond 
Rice, had died in 1863, and in 
1867 Rice had married a young 
widow, Julia Elizabeth Baldwin 
Brown. Both marriages were 
childless. Influenced by the ex- 
ample of Stephen Girard (who 
had established Girard College in 
Philadelphia) and Peter Cooper 
(of Cooper Union for the Ad- 
vancement of Science and Art in 
New York City), Rice first in- 
tended to build an orphans' insti- 
tute in Somerset County, New 

Jersey. In 1882 he made a will 
leaving the bulk of his estate to 
such an institution, hoping that 
he might help those without 
family or influence to secure 
training for a skilled job. 

Before the orphans' home was 
set up, however. Rice changed his 
mind. While in Houston on busi- 
ness in 1886 or 1887, Rice visited 
his old friend Cesar M. Lombardi, 
who was president of the Hous- 
ton School Board. Lombardi was 
looking for money with which to 
build a municipal high school. 
Since Rice had made a large part 
of his fortune in Houston, Lom- 
bardi suggested that Rice leave 
some of it to the city in the form 
of a school. Rice made no imme- 
diate decision, but by the spring 
of 1891, he had decided what he 
would do with his money. He in- 
formed Lombardi that he wanted 
to endow an "institution of learn- 
ing" similar to Cooper Union but 
separate from the public school 
system, to be called the William 
M. Rice Institute of Literature, 
Science and Art. Provisions were 

to be made for financing, includ- 
ing a $200,000 note to be held as 
endowment; but beyond that 
Rice did not want anything to be 
done during his lifetime toward 
the establishment of the 

On May 13, 1891, Rice and the 
six trustees whom he had picked 
signed a deed of indenture for "a 
Public Library and Institute for 
the Advancement of Literature, 
Science and Art." On May 19 the 
charter for the William M. Rice 
Institute was registered in Aus- 
tin, and the deed of indenture 
was included in the charter. The 
six trustees were Lombardi; 
Emanuel Raphael, president of 
the Houston Electric Light and 
Power Company and trustee of 
the Houston public school sys- 
tem; Rice's brother Frederick, a 
banker and treasurer of the Hous- 
ton and Texas Central Railroad; 
James E. McAshan, a banker; Al- 
fred S. Richardson, a director of 
the Houston and Texas Central 
Railroad; and James A. Baker, Jr., 
Rice's attorney. 

The Beginnings 

8. William Marsh Rice as an older man. This engraving was the frontispiece 
of B. H. Carroll's Standard History of Houston, Texas IKnoxviUe. Tenn.: 
H. W. Crew ei> Co.. 19 12}. 

In 1892 Rice drew up four 
deeds of gift with his second wife 
Ehzabeth as cosigner and gave 
the recently incorporated histi- 
tute a sizable amount of land in 
several parcels. The most impor- 
tant for the school would be al- 
most 50,000 acres of timberland 
in Beauregard Parish, Louisiana. 
The Institute also received nearly 
10,000 acres in lones County, 
Texas, seven acres in Houston 
fronting on Louisiana Street 
(listed in the deed as "Site of the 
Institute"), and the Capitol Hotel 
at Main Street and Texas Avenue. 
After his second wife's death in 
1896, Rice made a new will leav- 
ing the bulk of his estate to the 

From 1896 to 1904 the pro- 
posed endowment of the Institute 
was in jeopardy. Mrs. Rice died in 
Houston on luly 24, 1896, having 
made an extraordinary will on 
her deathbed without her hus- 
band's knowledge, disposing of 
one-half of all assets acquired by 
Mr. Rice during their marriage. 
This will included a repudiation 
of the deeds for the Institute, and 
it named as executor Houston at- 
torney Orren Holt, the husband 
of a woman who had attended 
Mrs. Rice constantly in her last 
illness. Mrs. Rice's will was in 
accordance with Texas commu- 
nity property laws; but since the 
Rices were not actually Texas 
residents at the time, William 
Marsh Rice was confident that 
the will was not valid. He con- 
tested it. The case had not yet 
been resolved when on Septem- 
ber 23, 1900, Rice himself died 
under mysterious circumstances 
in New York City. To the con- 

The Beginnings 


sternation of James A. Baker, Jr., 
and the other Institute trustees, 
one Albert T. Patrick, lawyer and 
colleague of Orren Holt, materi- 
alized with a new will purporting 
to supersede Mr. Rice's will of 
1896. Patrick also produced a 
general assignment under which 
he assumed control of all of 
Rice's property. Under the new 
documents the Institute would 
get nothing. 

Baker rushed to New York and, 
with Rice's New York lawyers 
and the cooperation of the dis- 
trict attorney's office, inves- 
tigated the sudden death and 
suspect legal instruments. As a 
result Patrick and Rice's young 
valet, Charles Jones, were in- 
dicted on October 4, 1900, for 
forgery of the will and other doc- 
uments. Soon after that the coro- 
ner reported that he had found a 
fatal quantity of bichloride of 
mercury in Rice's vital organs. 

The manservant Jones con- 
fessed that he and Patrick had 
murdered the elderly gentleman. 
Jones claimed that Patrick had 
held a towel containing chlo- 
roform over Rice's nose and 
mouth until he had ceased to 
breathe. In addition, he admitted 
that the two of them had been 
administering mercury pills to 
Rice before the successful mur- 
der. After this confession Jones 
twice tried to commit suicide in 
prison and was confined to Belle- 
vue Hospital. Patrick, who had 
been released on bail from the 
forgery charge, was arrested again 
in March 1901 and charged with 
the murder of William M. Rice. 
A sensational trial followed, dur- 
ing which Jones admitted that he 

t-^'.", ai'.l s .::-i i- '.'• t, 1 on <i-.-jii enure t '- ".. .e ■^ .i I .\.>-=— "-T. "'-,- 
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1:1 "^3S'^I.-:.V.y vrErs;. , 1, tie -^ald Wl^llai -l. S:::e, 
Zo ". il^ '■\y ',9^t ■•■■11: HT.'i T»!?ta"iBnt, ha"= Buh'-rlVe ; r.y 
ni'ie -jnd arflxe 1 ly •j-'hI In t he p'-esenc; of .^/i<^^^.,.^.^-3 

a'5 Tui^-'^'^lMn; wltn<>'?';» = , w>io 9l?7i the "3Tne a"! ^ui?'""!^;.;:;; 

v/ltne^ise^ at !ny "eque-;!, in ray presenile ar.rl Ir z\v- n-»-eop".-e 

o" eac'n ot i"- t>ils JHS day of it(--<_f-<_-— " , A. 0. nineteen 
hundred (19:0 ). f^ 

Si.^r.o-I, seale""., p'-''" --'■ i" 1 ^inl decla'^ed by tie ■''-ild 
V/l,.iiur.i ;.i. T;i,;e, v, 'rr~ an1 t3 be ii<; lu^it Will and Te<?ta- 
.■•i--:"t, in ou'^ p^e<!e'l'^e, i.^.d we, at r.i'- request and In iit = 
p-.'-on^" !)ni In t'l" 
sli:-"=.l ou'" n-i'ios •1'? witre^'^es ■3'''' day yf 

I"* of eao"". ot'ie", have h'='^eiinto 

IST^ ), 

9. The iflst page of the will forged by Albert T. Patrick in William Marsh 
Rice's name. This document was later discredited. 


The Beginnings 

had actually admmistcrcd the 
chloroform at Patrick's sugges- 
tion. Patrick was convicted of re- 
sponsibility for planning the deed 
and was sentenced to die. (The 
sentence was commuted to life 
imprisonment, and Patrick was 
pardoned in 1912.) Jones, who 
had given evidence, was set free 
and allowed to return to Texas, 
where he committed suicide in 


Even after the fraudulent Pat- 
rick will had been discredited. 
Baker had to worry about Eliza- 
beth Rice's last testament. Her 
executor Orren Holt knew that 
there was little chance of proving 
his claims of Texas residence in 
court in light of all the informa- 
tion that had surfaced in the Pat- 
rick trial. He eventually settled 
out of court with Baker and the 
other executors for $200,000 for 
Mrs. Rice's legatees. Lawyers' 
fees, executors' commissions, 
and Rice's own bequests to his 
relatives took more than a mil- 
lion dollars out of the estate as 
well; but when matters were 
settled in 1904, the Institute 
had a beginning endowment of 

The Board of Trustees 

The original members of the In- 
stitute's Board of Trustees were 
William M. Rice's friends, and all 
were prominent in Houston af- 
fairs. They were an interesting 
group of men. The chairman of 
the board was James Addison 
Baker, Jr., a lawyer with his fa- 
ther's firm of Baker, Botts, & 
Baker, known to most people as 

10. First Board of Trustees of the Rice Institute, 191 1. Back row, left to right: 
Benjamin Botts Rice, Edgar Odell Lovett, Emanuel Raphael. William Marsh 
Rice, fr. Front row: fames Everett McAshan. Cesar Maurice Lombardi, fames 
Addision Baker, fr. 

"Captain Baker" because of his 
captaincy of the Houston Light 
Guard, a drill team and social 
association. Baker had graduated 
from the Texas Military Acad- 
emy but never attended college. 
He had been chairman of the 
Rice Board of Trustees at Rice's 
request since 1891 and would 
continue to serve as chairman 
until his own death in 1941. His 
quick action at the time of Rice's 
murder had in large measure 
saved the endowment. A busi- 
nessman as well as a lawyer. 
Baker was also a director of the 
Merchants and Planters Oil Com- 
pany, the Houston Gas and Light 
Company, the Guardian Trust 
Company, and the South Texas 
Commercial National Bank." 

The first secretary of the board 
was Emanuel Raphael. In addi- 
tion to being president of the 
Houston Electric Light and 
Power Company, he was presi- 
dent of the Southern Bridge and 
Construction Company and an 
organizer of the Houston Clear- 
ing House Association. Swiss- 
born Cesar M. Lombardi had 
been associated with William D. 
Cleveland and Company, whole- 
sale grocers and cotton factors, 
until 1899 when he moved to 
Portland, Oregon. Lombardi re- 
turned to Texas in 1907 as vice- 
president and acting president of 
the A. H. Belo Company, pub- 
lishers of the Dallas News and 
the Galveston News. Although 
the charter specified that the 

The Beginnings 


trustees should be residents of 
Houston, that provision was not 
apphed to the original group. 
Lombardi remained an active 
member of the board while living 
in Dallas, lames E. McAshan, in 
the bankmg business since his 
youth, was one of the organiz- 
ers and a charter director of the 
South Texas National Bank, 
which later merged with the 
Commercial National Bank to 
become the South Texas Com- 
mercial National Bank, with 
which Baker was affiliated. Mc- 
Ashan was also connected with 
the Union Compress and Ware- 
house Company and the Ameri- 
can Surety Company of New 
York. At the time of his death in 
1916 he was vice-chairman of the 
Institute's board." In addition to 
his directorship of the Houston 
and Texas Central Railroad, Al- 
fred S. Richardson had been city 
secretary of Houston. After Rich- 
ardson's death in 1899, the board 
appointed a nephew of the 
founder, William M. Rice, Ir., to 
Richardson's place. (Rice the 
founder had very much wanted 
this nephew on the board in the 
first available vacant position.) 
The founder's namesake was a di- 
rector of the Union National 
Bank, the Guardian Trust Com- 
pany, and the Houston Land and 
Trust Company and was presi- 
dent of the Merchants and Plant- 
ers Oil Company. After the 
founder's murder in 1900, the 
board had appointed another 
nephew, Benjamin Botts Rice, to 
take his place. This third Rice 
was president of the Rice Land 
Lumber Company, vice-president 
and general manager of the Mer- 

chants and Planters Oil Com- 
pany, and vice-president of the 
Grant Locomotive Works. When 
original member of the board 
Frederick Allyn Rice (brother of 
the founder) died in 1901, the 
board left his position open.*^ 

The Board of Trustees, as es- 
tablished by the charter, was a 
self-perpetuating group of seven 
members. After the estate was 
settled, full control and manage- 
ment of the endowment passed 
to the hands of these men. The 
trustees continued to have the 
final decision-making power over 
the Institute and the endowment 
and its increase. They were not, 
however, without limitations on 
their actions; William M. Rice 
was too shrewd a businessman 
not to protect his investments. 
The Institute was subject to vis- 
itation by any court to prevent 
and redress "any mismanage- 
ment, waste, or breach of trust." 
Furthermore, the trustees were 
forbidden to go into debt with In- 
stitute funds. For all their work 
the trustees were to receive no 
salary or other compensation.^ 

Much of the endowment as re- 
ceived in 1904 consisted of rail- 
road, city, and miscellaneous 
bonds, and bank, trust company, 
and other stocks. There were also 
about $370,000 in promissory 
notes. The trustees made changes 
in some of these investments and 
organized the Rice Land Lumber 
Company to handle the Louisi- 
ana holdings. By judicious invest- 
ment, mostly in bonds, first 
mortgage notes, and stocks, the 
trustees increased the endow- 
ment to more than $7 million by 
19 ID, with gross revenues per an- 

num in excess of $200,000 and 
net revenues of more than 

Defining the Institute 

Once the trustees felt that the 
endowment was prudently in- 
vested, they could turn to their 
primary purpose: establishment 
of the Rice Institute. The charter 
was both explicit and vague. It di- 
rected the establishment and 
maintenance of "a Public Library, 
and the maintenance of an In- 
stitution for the Advancement of 
Literature, Science, Art, Philoso- 
phy and Letters; and establish- 
ment and maintenance of a Poly- 
technic school; for procuring and 
maintaining scientific collec- 
tions; collections of chemical 
and philosophical apparatus, me- 
chanical and artistic models, 
drawings, pictures and statues; 
and for cultivating other means 
of instruction for the white in- 
habitants of the City of Houston, 
and State of Texas." The inden- 
ture within the charter further 
stated that the library and Insti- 
tute were to be free and open to 
all,"* that the "thorough poly- 
technic school" was to admit 
women as well as men, and that 
it should be designed "to give in- 
structions on the application of 
science and Art to the useful oc- 
cupations of life." Furthermore, 
all the subdivisions were to be 
nonsectarian and nonpartisan, 
subject only to such restrictions 
as the board thought necessary 
to preserve the good order and 
honor of the Institute." 

Some of the ideas inherent in 


The Beginnings 

these instruetions can be traced 
to Rice's interest in the Cooper 
Union and Girard College. Coop- 
er's school admitted female stu- 
dents and was the first important 
trade school for women in the 
United States. Both Cooper and 
Girard wanted practical subjects 
taught at their institutions, and 
both wanted to help those who 
could not afford to help them- 
selves. Rice had never gone to 
college, but he had helped his 
nephew William Marsh Rice, Jr., 
finance his education at Prince- 
ton, an experience that may also 
have added to his determination 
to make attendance at the Insti- 
tute free. Girard had directed that 
his college be nonsectarian, and 
so had Rice, although Rice was 
not as insistent on this point as 
Girard was. Rice's reason for the 
stipulation of nonsectarianism 
may be found in the 1882 will 
that would have established an 
orphans' home: 

All the instructors and teachers 
shall take pains to instill into 
the minds of the scholars the 
purest principles of morality so 
that on their entrance into active 
life they may from inclination 
and habit evince benevolence to- 
ward their fellow creatures and a 
love of truth, sobriety and indus- 
try, and I further direct and re- 
quire that no sectarianism shall 
be permitted in the Institution, 
so that the pupils may be left 
free to adopt such religious views 
as their matured reason may 

Even though as friends they 
had had many conversations with 
the founder about the Rice Insti- 

tute, and though they held writ- 
ten instructions, the trustees still 
had many decisions to make in 
order to put Rice's ideas into 
practice. The major decision to 
be made, before almost anything 
else could be done, was exactly 
what kind of school they were 
going to build. "We think," trust- 
ees Raphael and McAshan wrote, 
"it was the intention of the 
founder to give manual training, 
applied science and liberal arts 
preference in the organization. It 
is our desire to realize his wishes 
if possible and at the same time 
be affiliated with the school sys- 
tem of the country." The bylaws 
for the board adopted in 190 s 
speak of "a school for instruction 
in the arts of design, and in such 
other branches of knowledge as 
in their |the trustees'] judgment 
will tend to the elevation and 
employment of intelligent labor." 
Students were to be amateur and 
industrial pupils, and the courses 
they were to take included chem- 
istry, physics, mechanics, elec- 
tricity, and mechanical draw- 
ing. "This instruction shall be 
adapted to the comprehension 
and improvement of the mechan- 
ics and mechanic's apprentices of 
Houston and its vicinity being in- 
tended to bridge over the gap 
which now exists between sci- 
ence and the practical occupation 
of life."- 

Before making any further de- 
cisions regarding the school, the 
trustees studied other institu- 
tions of learning. On a trip east 
in 1906 Raphael visited several 
schools of technology, manual 
training, and art. He investigated 
Girard College, Drexel Institute, 

the Academy of Fine Arts, and 
the Memorial Hall and Museum, 
all in Philadelphia, and Pratt In- 
stitute in Brooklyn. He had seen 
Cooper Union on a previous 
visit. On his return to Houston 
he wrote a report, and it is clear 
that Raphael had done a thor- 
ough job. He had examined en- 
dowments, revenues, expendi- 
tures, courses of study, tuition, 
makeup of the student body, 
types of laboratories and machine 
shops and equipment, the size of 
each campus, cost of the build- 
ings, and the need for dormito- 
ries and a gymnasium. The re- 
port closed with a plea to the 
other trustees to visit several of 
these types of schools themselves 
to get "a much better idea of 
what our Institute ought to be." 
Clearly at that time the trustees 
had in mind an institution more 
along the lines of Pratt Institute 
or Cooper Union than the univer- 
sity that they finally created." 

The Search for a President 

It was lanuary 1907 before the 
board acted formally to find 
someone to head the school, al- 
though they had been receiving 
recommendations since 1905. 
One man from Florida had rec- 
ommended himself and had sent 
in copies of seventeen testimo- 
nials, each on a separate small 
strip of paper. Of more impor- 
tance were the recommendations 
for Arthur Lefevre, former profes- 
sor of mathematics at the Univer- 
sity of Texas and state superin- 
tendent for public instruction in 
Texas. Letters praising Lefevre 

The Beginnings 


came from all over the state and 
from outside of Texas. The board, 
however, preferred more order m 
their search. Chairman Baker ap- 
pointed Raphael and McAshan to 
compose a letter asking for rec- 
ommendations and to send it to 
the leading universities and insti- 
tutes m the United States. Other 
recipients of the letter were such 
prominent Americans as The- 
odore Roosevelt, Grover Cleve- 
land, and William lennings 
Bryan. '^ 

The letter inviting recommen- 
dations gave some indication of 
the problems that the board was 
having both in deciding on the 
nature of the school and finding 
a "superintendent" for it. The 
only hard facts mentioned in the 
letter were that the school had 
an endowment of $s million or 
more, "that it wouTdbe nonsec- 
tarian and nonpolitical, that it 
would have free tuition and be 
open to whites, and that it would 
be located in Houston. Other- 
wise, the trustees could speak 
only in generalities about the 
type of institution they wanted 
and ask for a recommendation of 
the very best man who could 
help make some of the decisions 
and hasten the work. "We need a 
young man, a broad man, and we 
need him at once."" 

This method produced a num- 
ber of prospects, although some 
of the advisers echoed the trust- 
ees' uncertainty about what 
the Institute was to be. David F. 
Houston, president of the Uni- 
versity of Texas, was anxious to 
help but wrote that it would aid 
his recommendation if he knew 
more definitely what the board 

wanted — an institute like Drexel 
or Girard, a technical college 
like the Massachusetts Institute 
of Technology, or a combina- 
tion like Cornell. J. E. Pursons 
of Cooper Union answered the 
query with the news that his in- 
stitution was also looking for its 
own president and so could not 

The board wrote to twenty-five 
individuals and institutions and 
compiled a list of thirty-nine 
names, from which it appears 
that four were chosen for closer 
scrutiny. Albert Ross Hill, dean 
of the Teachers College at Mis- 
souri State University, had been 
recommended by both President 
David Starr Jordan of Stanford 
and President Jacob Gould Schur- 
man of Cornell. Howard Mc- 
Clenahan, professor of electrical 
engineering at Princeton, was 
Grover Cleveland's suggestion. 
President Henry S. Pritchett of 
the Boston School of Technology 
had recommended Charles R. 
Richards of Columbia. And Edgar 
Odell Lovett, professor of mathe- 
matics at Princeton, had been 
recommended by Woodrow Wil- 
son, president of that university."' 

In the early stages of the 
search. Hill was the most favored 
candidate and McClenahan sec- 
ond. Raphael went to Missouri to 
see Hill and returned much im- 
pressed by him. Only thirty- 
eight, Hill had had considerable 
experience in university admin- 
istration and was at that time in 
charge of the administrative work 
of his institution. He was in line 
for the presidency of Missouri 
State and could expect a salary of 
$6,000 a year. Raphael liked the 

recommendations. Hill's present 
work, his youth, his ambition. 
Hill said that he was willing to 
visit Houston before accepting 
the position at the Institute, 
"(provided that position were 
tendered to him at $6,000 per an- 
num, including a home)," so that 
both board and prospect could 
know each other before further 
steps were taken." 

Through Grover Cleveland the 
board communicated with Mc- 
Clenahan, who wanted to know 
what the salary would be before 
committing himself in any way. 
The question of salary had proba- 
bly already come up with the 
board. President Houston from 
the University of Texas had men- 
tioned in his letter that it would 
be difficult to get "one of the 
really strong, sane educators" 
from out of state for less than 
$5,000 or $6,000 and a house. 
The board told McClenahan that 
compensation would be "$6,000 
per annum and dwelling free.'"" 

Certainly none of the four 
seemed eager to become the first 
president of the Rice Institute. 
Hill was interested but wrote 
that the main defect he saw in 
the charter was the provision for 
free tuition. McClenahan had 
reservations about the salary be- 
cause he was "so totally ignorant 
of the character of the Institute 
and of the work involved." He 
was willing, however, to hold the 
matter of compensation in abey- 
ance until he and the board had 
time to learn about each other. In 
spite of his reservations Mc- 
Clenahan was enthusiastic about 
the possibilities as he imagined 
them. "My mind glows when I 


The Beginnings 

think of the ennrmous amcnint 
such an instituticm may be made 
to do for the further development 
of the whole great Southwest." 
The board mvited both Hill and 
McClenahan to come to Hous- 
ton. They also invited Richards 
and Lovett; but in the case of 
these latter two, there seems 
to have been little preliminary 

Hill came to Houston on 
March i8, McClenahan on April 
8, Lovett on April 1 1, and Rich- 
ards on April 22. Edgar Odell 
Lovett wrote an account of his 
experiences, which were probably 
similar to the other candidates'. 
He was shown around the city 
and taken to see several possible 
sites for the Institute. The trust- 
ees were obviously not convinced 
of the desirability of the location 
on Louisiana Street, which had 
been designated as the school site 
by William Marsh Rice. The 
trustees and presidential candi- 
dates looked at the Louisiana 
Street lot, the old Rice ranch in 
what is now Bellaire, a wooded 
site "down the channel," and 
another location far out Main 
Street. That night Lovett and the 
board had an intensive discus- 
sion. Lovett reported later that 
the trustees' examination "was 
the most trying ordeal I have as 
yet passed through. Question 
after question about things I 
knew nothing about and had 
never thought out.'"' 

Choosing a president was not 
an easy task, and Lovett had great 
sympathy for the members of 
the board. "They were successful 
men of business, and facing as 
difficult a problem in trying to 

select a college president as a 
group of college professors would 
be if they had to set about to find 
a railroad president. Indeed I 
think the chances might have 
been in favor of the college pro- 
fessors' group.'"' 

The trustees' examination elic- 
ited a number of opinions from 
Lovett that he thought signifi- 
cant. He thought it would be well 
to build and maintain the Insti- 
tute out of the income from the 
endowment alone. He anticipated 
a fall in interest rates and related 
that Princeton funds were being 
invested in local enterprises. 
Concerning the site, Lovett advo- 
cated an extensive area outside 
the city on the side to which in- 
dustries would never come: he 
liked the Main Street location. 
He also spoke of the necessity of 
developing a comprehensive ar- 
chitectural plan before breaking 
ground for any buildings. On the 
salary question, he thought it 
would take $10,000 to get the 
right man. Finally he said that 
the trustees ought to get Wood- 
row Wilson to do the job.'' 

There was one other problem 
that the board might not have no- 
ticed but that spoke volumes to 
academics: the matter of the 
word "institute." "The very des- 
ignation 'institute', if it did not 
mean a female seminary, or one 
for defectives, or one for the col- 
ored race, meant an institute of 
technology," Lovett wrote in 
1944. "There was some hint of 
this that night, so I told them 
that I could not be a party for any 
such undertaking that would not 
assure as large a place for pure 
science as for applied science. It 

was an entering wedge away from 
technology and towards the uni- 
versity idea. I have always thought 
It bore fruit in the future. "- 

When he got back to Missouri, 
A. Ross Hill had some second 
thoughts about the situation in 
Houston. He wrote Raphael on 
March 25 that he thought the 
board had "a fine opportunity to 
either make a great success or a 
stupendous failure in administer- 
ing Its affairs." Eleven days later 
he asked to be removed from 

Other advisers whom the board 
consulted included Arthur Le- 
fevre, R. S. Heyer of Georgetown, 
Texas, President Houston from 
Austin, President H. H. Har- 
rington of the Agricultural and 
Mechanical College of Texas 
(Texas A(SvMl, Dr. A. E. Turner of 
Trinity University in Waxa- 
hachie, and Professor I. H. Dil- 
lard of Tulane. The visits con- 
tinued into lune and did not go 
unnoticed. The Houston Post re- 
ported the comings and goings, 
and Its editor expressed his plea- 
sure that the Rice board was tak- 
ing action to appoint a president 
and organize the Institute." 

After all their haste in securing 
recommendations, choosing can- 
didates, and arranging visits, the 
trustees made no decision until 
November, although the board 
minutes indicate no reason for 
this delay. Then at the regular 
meeting of November 20, 1907, 
the trustees unanimously elected 
Edgar Odell Lovett as their choice 
for the first president of the Rice 
Institute. William M. Rice, Ir., 
was appointed to go to Prince- 
ton and call Dr. Lovett "to take 

The Beginnings 


charge as educational head of the 
Institute"; Rice was empowered 
to offer a salary of up to $7,500 
and a contract for five years.'" 

Rice went to Princeton and re- 
turned to report to the board on 
December 18. Lovett, he stated, 
could not say at that time whether 
he would accept or not, as he had 
just started a new project. When 
Lovett indicated that the $6,000 
that Rice had tendered was insuf- 
ficient. Rice had offered $7,000 
and a home. Although Lovett was 
not particular about a contract, 
he could not seem to come to a 
decision; Rice finally suggested 
that Lovett take thirty days to de- 
cline or accept the offer.'" 

To help persuade Lovett to 
come, chairman Baker wrote a 
strong letter the next day. Baker 
expressed his disappointment 
that Lovett had not given them a 
definite answer and wrote "to 
urge upon you to cast your lot 
with us." The trustees had pro- 
ceeded quite deliberately in mak- 
ing a selection. Baker said. They 
had talked to many people from 
Texas and elsewhere in the search, 
but the position had been offered 
to no one except Lovett. Lovett 
had made a fine impression upon 
the trustees; they liked his man- 
ner and his candor, and they be- 
lieved him to be eminently quali- 
fied for the presidency. 

One paragraph presented the 
real selling point. 

Our institution is well en- 
dowed — n7ore so than any in- 
stitution I know of in the South; 
the Trustees are practically with- 
out any experience in educa- 
tional matters and they will be 
disposed to give you a very free 

hand. As a rule they are broad 
minded and liberal, and desire 
m establishing the new institu- 
tion to lay its foundations broad 
and deep, and to employ at all 
times the best talent that can be 
had anywhere. The opportunity 
offered you is an unusual one, 
and however promising may be 
your prospects at Princeton, 
you ought to be slow in declin- 
ing. Such an opportunity rarely 
comes to one so young in life 
[Lovett was thirty-six).-' 

Raphael added his inducements 
a couple of days later and indi- 
cated certain decisions that the 
board had made in the past year. 
He said that the board had agreed 
that Lovett would not be called 
upon to teach; filling the position 
of president with its executive 
duties would be sufficient ser- 
vice. The trustees also agreed 
with Lovett that the faculty 
should be "high class men, nomi- 
nated by yourself, because it is 
our express aim to make the 
Wm. M. Rice Institute a high 
class institution patterned — in 
great measure — after the Mas- 
sachusetts School [sic] of Tech- 
nology." More important, the 
board was "free and untrammeled 
to make our institute as broad 
and as progressive as the heart of 
any ambitious educator could de- 
sire." Raphael called Lovett to be 
the leader of an institution that 
(quoting Lovett's own words back 
to him) "shall contribute power- 
fully to the sustaining sources of 
the life of the nation — where by 
the Nation I mean the life, the 
thought, the conscience, the au- 
thority, of all the people of all 
the land. . . . Can you imagine 

that any work appeals to you 
more powerfully than this great 
work in our Southland? "'- 

About the same time, Lovett 
wrote William Rice, Jr., that he 
did want to come to the Institute. 
He had seen Woodrow Wilson, 
Rice's old classmate from Prince- 
ton, and discussed when he could 
leave the university. Wilson had 
asked him to hold his professor- 
ship until the end of that aca- 
demic year but said he could drop 
his duties in February and come 
to Houston in March. The only 
problem that Lovett saw was in 
the matter of salary. He wanted 
$8,000 and a house. He said he 
had not been able, while Rice 
was there, to think clearly about 
salary and was unwilling "to 
seem to hold up an honest man 
in my own house."" 

The board read and discussed 
Lovett's letter on December 28, 
and they unanimously accepted 
his terms. Raphael sent Lovett a 
telegram followed by a letter an- 
nouncing his official election as 
the educational head of the Rice 
Institute. Since Lovett had not 
particularly wanted a five-year 
contract as originally offered and 
had not mentioned it in his ac- 
ceptance letter, a contract was 
not part of the terms." 

Lovett's informal reply on Jan- 
uary 2, 1908, indicated his en- 
thusiasm. He wrote that he was 
"almost arrogant in my hopeful- 
ness. I believe that we are go- 
ing to have the patience and the 
power to do the thing right, and 
by all the demons dancing in the 
Dog-star we will make the thing 
go." His formal reply on January 
18 expressed his delight more so- 
berly but nonetheless powerfully. 

The Rcginnings 

He pledged his strength and 
training to the task and was rely- 
ing confidently on the coopera- 
tion of all friends of education in 
Texas. He had a large vision of 
purpose for the Institute; 

I promise to serve The Rice Insti- 
tute of Houston in patiently- 
seeking with them (the trustees] 
the lines of its development; in 
persistently pressing with them 
the plans for its usefulness; in 
striving with their help to com- 
bine in its personality those ele- 
ments — largeness of mind, 
strength of character, determined 
purpose, fire of genius, devoted 
loyalty — which make for leader- 
ship in institutions as in men; in 
blazing with the brands and 
torches they shall hand me a 
trail down which we may hope 
to find a time when from its 
walls shall go forth a continuous 
column of men trained in the 
highest degree, equipped in the 
largest way, for positions of trust 
in the public service, for com- 
manding careers in the affairs of 
the world.'' 

The Rice Institute had its first 

Edgar Odell Lovett 

Edgar Odell Lovett was born in 
Shreve, Ohio, on April 14, 1871. 
At the age of fifteen he enrolled 
at Bethany College in West Vir- 
ginia, a school of the Christian 
Church, to which his parents be- 
longed. (They had hesitated to 
send him so young to one of the 
bigger universities.) He graduated 
in 1890 from Bethany with a 

II. The first president of the WiHicim Marsh Rice histitute. Edfiar Odell 
Lovett, igii. 

The Beginnings 

Bachelor of Arts degree and by 
1892 had both Bachelor of Sci- 
ence and Master of Arts degrees. 
While at Bethany Lovett had 
tutored in Greek, and he never 
lost his love of classical lit- 
erature. From 1890 to 1892 he 
taught mathematics at West Ken- 
tucky College, another Christian 
Church school. Lovett v^^as too 
ambitious and too good in mathe- 
matics to stay in small, isolated 
towns, however, so in 1892 he 
went to the University of Vir- 
ginia for graduate study. While 
he was a student there he also 
taught astronomy. He graduated 
three years later with another 
master's degree and a doctorate. 

In those days a career in math- 
ematics demanded study in Eu- 
rope. From Virgmia, Lovett went 
to Leipzig to study under Sophus 
Lie, one of the leadmg mathe- 
maticians on the continent. He 
also attended lectures in Rome 
and in Christiania, Norway, and 
on his way home through France 
he heard the famous lecturers of 
that country. He returned home 
with two more degrees, another 
M.A. and another Ph.D. Every 
one of his seven degrees, "none of 
which I attach to my name," had 
been taken with honors. With 
Lie's help he secured positions at 
both the lohns Hopkins Univer- 
sity and the University of Vir- 
ginia for the spring term in 1897 
and commuted between them 
with a pass on the BtkO Railroad. 
That summer he lectured at the 
University of Chicago. 

Lovett was not without offers 
for the fall. Drake University had 
him in mind for its presidency, 
and the University of Minnesota 

wanted him to teach mathemat- 
ics. He turned them both down 
to take an assistant professorship 
at Princeton. Twenty-six when he 
went to Princeton, he had already 
published at least six articles in 
the American Astronomical Jour- 
nal, Annals of Mathematics, 
Astronomische Nacbrichten, As- 
tro-Physics, and the Bulletin of 
the American Mathematical So- 
ciety. He had also read a number 
of papers before the Mathemati- 
cal Club of the University of Vir- 
ginia and the American Mathe- 
matical Society. From all who 
had worked with him, he had 
garnered high recommendations 
as an excellent teacher and a 
man of unspotted character. He 
described himself then as "in 
mathematics for the sake of the 
science and its use as a powerful 
educational implement and |I] en- 
joy text-book teaching and for- 
mal lecturing equally well. I am 
in no hurry to settle and propose 
to be thoroughly satisfied that a 
place is the one for me and I the 
man for the place before I attach 
myself permanently anywhere." 
In 1897 he married Mary Ellen 
Hale, who had been a student at 
West Kentucky College when he 
was teaching there.'- 

Lovett rose quickly in the aca- 
demic hierarchy at Princeton. By 
1900 he was a full professor, and 
in 1905 he succeeded Charles A. 
Young as professor of astronomy. 
Princeton, however, was more 
than just a place to work for Lov- 
ett. He made friends there, and 
the one he most cherished was 
Woodrow Wilson. The feeling 
was evidently reciprocal. When 
Wilson told Lovett that he had 

recommended him to the trust- 
ees at Rice, he said that there was 
no one on the faculty whom he 
had counted on more to remain; 
but he felt bound to present the 
chance to the best man and let 
the man decide for himself. 
Lovett had some trouble framing 
his letter of resignation to Wil- 

/ am leaving Princeton a Prince- 
ton man firmly believing that 
whatever training I may have 
achieved here can be devoted to 
the interests of the University in 
no better way than in an effort to 
bring to realization m another 
environment those spiritual and 
intellectual ideals and traditions 
which have made Princeton con- 
spicuous in the Nation's service, 
and which, in terms of your far- 
reaching plans for the develop- 
ment of the University, are now 
making Princeton the most inter- 
esting educational center on the 
continent. . . . I am unwilling to 
bring it [the letter] to a close 
without saying to you again that 
my roots here are long and deep: 
I cannot tell you how hard it is 
for me to break them." 

But break them he did, and in 
March 1908 Lovett arrived in 
Houston with a number of ideas 
for the organization of the Rice 
Institute. He wanted to open the 
Institute in 19 10 and to hold two 
formal ceremonies connected 
with the opening — the laying of 
the cornerstone of the first build- 
ing and the installation of the 
first president. Local and state 
dignitaries would be invited to 
the first, and for the second the 
guest list would be increased to 

The Beginnings 

inelude representatives of foreign 
and domestic universities and a 
group of distinguished scholars 
and scientists who would deliver 
lectures. The seeds of the formal 
opening were thus planted early. 
Lovett wanted to make the scope 
of the new institution broad, to 
realize the full meaning of the 
objectives as stated in its title 
and charter, not only for the indi- 
vidual or society but also to ad- 
vance the body of human 
knowledge. For the present, the 
Rice Institute would look to the 
organization of a faculty of sci- 
ences of undisputed distinction. 
An embryonic faculty of letters 
would be developed at first only 
as far as necessary to comple- 
ment the courses in technical 
subjects. Lovett especially 
wanted the Institute to be a uni- 
versity that could award 

Structuring the Institute 

Before the faculty was recruited, 
a more detailed plan of general 
organization had to be developed. 
To that end Lovett asked the 
board to send him on a journey 
of inspection to investigate the 
leading educational institutions 
of the United States and Europe. 
He wanted to see what other 
schools were doing in all aspects 
of university life and to confer 
with the educators who were re- 
sponsible. The board agreed.'" 

While in Houston Lovett was 
entertained by the mayor and the 
Houston Business League and 
met with many prominent men 
of the city. The press duly re- 

ported his visit and for the most 
part seemed pleased with his ap- 
pointment. An editorial in the 
Houston Chronicle, however, 
voiced an opinion on a situation 
that Lovett might have to deal 
with when he returned; the board 
seemed to be ignoring it. Many 
citizens held the view that Wil- 
liam Marsh Rice had given the 
Institute to the people of Hous- 
ton, and some of them were im- 
patient to learn something defi- 
nite about the school. Only the 
"high character, business ability 
and honesty of purpose of the 
trustees" had prevented criticism 
of them for withholding informa- 
tion to which the public felt en- 
titled, the editorial claimed. It is 
interesting to note that the editor 
seemed more interested in the 
size of the endowment and its in- 
vestment than in the educational 
plan. "There are not perhaps ten 
men in Houston," the editor said, 
"who, if asked what the resources 
of the institute are or will likely 
be, either for building or for en- 
dowment, could give an answer 
which would be more than a haz- 
ardous guess. ... Of what the 
fund consists and how it is in- 
vested, and what are the returns 
upon the investment is known 
only to the trustees." The edi- 
torial concluded with the faint 
praise, "The highest tribute that 
could have been paid the trustees 
is the patience and confidence 
with which the people have so 
long waited in ignorance for in- 
formation which they feel they 
ought to have."' 

In May Lovett hired F. Car- 
rington Weems to be his private 
secretary and in June sent the 

board an itinerary; the trustees 
voted him $1,625 for the trip. 
Lovett, Mrs. Lovett, and Weems 
sailed for Liverpool and landed 
about August i, not to return to 
the United States until April of 
the following year. It was an ex- 
tensive trip. The party traveled 
through Great Britain, Ireland, 
Scandinavia, Germany, Switzer- 
land, Italy, France, Belgium, the 
Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, 
Greece, Austria-Hungary, Poland, 
and across Russia by the Trans- 
Siberian Express to Japan. They 
returned to Houston on May 7, 

President Lovett visited a large 
number of the major universities 
in Europe and many of the minor 
ones, as well as technical schools, 
laboratories, and even "public 
school" Eton. His interests were 
eclectic: architecture, building 
plans, laboratory arrangements, 
faculty organization, administra- 
tion, museums, and regulations. 
More important than his inves- 
tigation of the physical estab- 
lishments were the people with 
whom Lovett discussed his new 
institution. Besides prominent 
members of the various schools, 
he visited the king of Norway 
and consulted many Americans 
such as Woodrow Wilson and 
poet and professor Henry Van 
Dyke of Princeton who were 
traveling or lecturing in Europe 
at that time. All were quite will- 
ing to give the new president 

Vice-chancellor A. W. W. Dale 
of the University of Liverpool 
told him to consider men and 
equipment rather than expensive 
buildings. "Students do not ob- 

The Beginnings 


serve and there are no archi- 
tects." He also urged large sala- 
ries for the faculty and would not 
require science students to study 
the classics. 1. Theodore Merz, 
author of a history of nineteenth- 
century European thought, ad- 
vised a larger place for theoretical 
than for practical science. Prog- 
ress would be slower, but he 
thought that it would reap re- 
wards in the long run. Merz also 
said that women should be ad- 
mitted to the institution because 
"the woman question will not be 
solved as long as the women 
wish to have the same education 
as men." Professor [. A. Gibson of 
Glasgow told Lovett that en- 
trance requirements should in- 
clude English, mathematics, one 
foreign language (classical or 
modern), and a course in science. 
He recommended constructing 
the institution with the need for 
later additions in mind. Further- 
more, "Academic scope and con- 
tent [are] conditioned by two 
things: what the students are 
prepared for on entrance; what 
they should be prepared for on 

In London Lovett encountered 
Professor Simon Newcomb of 
Johns Hopkins, who thought that 
America already had enough uni- 
versities. He was, however, will- 
ing to pass along some recom- 
mendations. He advised high 
standards for degrees but a stan- 
dard of admission that would per- 
mit the student body to grow 
rapidly. He also recommended a 
small beginning at the earliest 
date possible and the hiring of 
Americans as instructors, prefer- 
ably southerners; he warned that 

it would be difficult to interest 
other men in the undertaking be- 
cause the Institute bore an indi- 
vidual's name and was local. Six 
English educators whom Lovett 
met in Dublin, including f. J. 
Thomson, D. W. W. Shaw, and 
W. E. Shipley, were considerably 
more helpful than Newcomb. 
They said that the Texans "should 
consider men before mortar and 
brains before bricks" and pay 
good salaries, especially to the ju- 
nior members of the staff. They 
all agreed that the best teach- 
ers were researchers who had 
time and facilities for their own 

Recommendations for the new 
faculty proliferated. Early in his 
trip, Lovett laid out in his journal 
a plan for the faculty that would 
have required at least 135 mem- 
bers. He knew what he wanted 
in a faculty of sciences, which 
"should be of larger scope in sub- 
ject and function than any simi- 
lar body heretofore organized. It 
must be prepared to make sci- 
ence, teach science, and apply 
science .... The work must be 
threefold: — Constructive in cre- 
ating the new, educative in teach- 
ing the old, immediately utilitar- 
ian in application of new and old 
to the common good."'" 

While in Europe, Lovett took 
time to do more than ask ques- 
tions. He read papers at the Asso- 
ciation for the Advancement of 
Science meeting in Dublin and to 
mathematicians of Stockholm 
and Uppsala at a dinner in Stock- 
holm — the first papers presented 
from the Rice Institute. He took 
advantage of opportunities to 
work in the outstanding libraries 

of universities that he visited. 
On a side trip he climbed to the 
highest edge of the crater of Vesu- 
vius, and he remarked from To- 
kyo that the censors' vigilance 
had made it impossible to send 
reports by mail from Russia.^" 

All in all, Lovett's trip was ex- 
tremely important. The fledgling 
president had met almost every- 
one of importance m education, 
including people from India and 
South Africa, and had made many 
friends for Rice. The guest list for 
the formal opening is eloquent 
testimony to the scope of his ac- 
quaintance. Furthermore, he had 
studied and discussed every facet 
of university organization, ad- 
ministration, and equipment 
with experts in the field. Without 
this trip, it is doubtful whether 
the Institute could have attracted 
an initial faculty of the caliber it 
did. Lovett knew that the people 
of Houston and the trustees were 
impatient for construction to be- 
gin; his own impatience was at 
times "almost uncontrollable." 
He was determined, however, not 
to rush but to get the maximum 
return from the trip and to do 
justice to the endowment. And 
he did. 

When Lovett returned from Eu- 
rope, he and the trustees made 
several formal decisions that 
were to set the tone and scope for 
the Institute for years to come. 
The recommendations originated 
with Lovett and answered several 
of the questions with which the 
board had been wrestling since 
1904. The first decision was to 
build and maintain the institu- 
tion out of annual income alone, 
keeping intact not only funds 


The Beginnings 

designated by tlie founder as en- 
dowment, but also those that 
might have been spent outright 
under the terms of the charter. 
Because of the prohibition on 
debts, this decision meant that 
growth would be slow." 

Second, and equally important, 
the Rice Institute would aspire to 
university standing of the highest 
level, seeking "to attain that high 
place through the research work 
of its early professors, setting no 
upper limit to its educational en- 
deavor and the lower limit no 
lower than the level reached by 
its prospective students on gradu- 
ation from the better public and 
private high schools preparing for 
college." This decision removed 
the institution from the purely 
"technical school" category that 
some of the trustees had first 
contemplated. It also meant that 
Lovett, who was cognizant of 
changes that had occurred in the 
preceding thirty years in higher 
education and of the connota- 
tions already mentioned for the 
word "institute," proclaimed an 
intention and a design larger than 
the trustees might have realized 
at the time. 

The idea of a "university," what 
one was and what it did, had 
gone through a number of defini- 
tions and redefinitions in the 
United States after the Civil War. 
Originally higher education in 
America had meant the estab- 
lishment of colleges that were 
schools of rather narrow scope. 
Their aims were to build charac- 
ter and instill moral and mental 
discipline, and they concentrated 
on teaching a superficial kind of 
knowledge in a fixed, four-year 

course of study with no special- 
ization in any subject. Those few 
students who planned to con- 
tinue their educations beyond 
college were destined for "profes- 
sional" schools of law, medicine, 
and divinity. From Germany 
came a different concept, that of 
the university, where the meth- 
ods and goals were quite dif- 
ferent. The heart of the German 
system was research, the disin- 
terested pursuit of truth through 
original investigation with the 
goal of advancing knowledge. 
Furthermore, German professors 
and their students specialized in 
narrow areas, and German uni- 
versities became famous for their 
success in joining teaching and 
research and in producing cre- 
ative, inquiring, scholarly minds. 
Before the Civil War, American 
scholars began to go to Germany 
to study and came back highly 
enthusiastic about changing the 
system of higher education at 
home to fit the German mode. By 
the 1870s and 1880s, it was abso- 
lutely necessary for scholars to 
study in Germany and earn a 
doctorate there before they could 
advance in an academic career. 

As with other concepts im- 
ported from the Old World, the 
idea of a university was modified 
by American viewpoints, needs, 
opinions, and realities. Questions 
had to be answered concerning 
its shape, governance, curricu- 
lum, students, and social pur- 
poses, as well as the place and 
role of the old undergraduate col- 
leges. What finally emerged as 
the American university reflected 
a period of experimentation. 

Different universities tried dif- 

ferent organizational schemes. 
State universities in the Midwest 
and West discarded the tradi- 
tional classical curriculum and 
organized around a series of spe- 
cialized undergraduate depart- 
ments. They added a number of 
strictly vocational subjects to the 
normal letters, arts, and sciences. 
New universities like Johns Hop- 
kins and Clark concentrated on 
graduate teaching and research, 
trying to do without an under- 
graduate college entirely or sub- 
ordinating it as much as possible 
to the graduate division. Harvard 
president Charles Eliot intro- 
duced the elective system and 
tried to convert the college itself 
into a university, with research 
and scholarship also on the un- 
dergraduate level. Yale, which in 
1 86 1 awarded the first earned 
doctorates in America, tried to 
build a university around Yale 
College by adding schools such 
as Sheffield Scientific School to 
those of medicine, law, and theol- 
ogy, while at the same time re- 
taining the collegiate aspects of 
fellowship, general studies, and a 
prescribed curriculum in the col- 
lege. Problems arose, however, in 
trying to keep Yale College from 
becoming subordinate to the uni- 
versity schools. As new Ameri- 
can universities were founded 
and old colleges reorganized, 
they tended to develop along 
departmental lines, with a col- 
lege of arts and letters as one 
among several equivalent schools 
or departments. 

Unlike the Germans, whose 
philosophy called for the pursuit 
of knowledge for its own sake, 
Americans talked about utility in 

The Beginnings 


education. A university was to be 
useful to society by providing 
various services to the commu- 
nity and it was to offer a util- 
itarian education for its students 
by providing them with an oc- 
cupation for life. Vocational sub- 
jects, such as engineering and 
other applied sciences that were 
formerly learned on the job, joined 
the humanities and pure sciences 
as university subjects; the dis- 
tinctions between professional 
and vocational careers began to 
blur. American pragmatism and 
the growing need for experts in 
the rapidly developing technolog- 
ical fields of industry further pro- 
moted the vocational side of 
higher education. 

This did not mean, however, 
that the university became a 
trade school. Entrenched in many 
schools were the departments of 
classical studies and humanities, 
and these often waged fierce bat- 
tles to maintain their places. 
Even though they had no visible 
relation to a "useful occupation," 
humanistic studies remained in 
the new university, at times in 
very powerful positions. Students 
could still earn a Bachelor of Arts 
degree carrying the connotation 
of a "good liberal education." 

By the early 1900s, most of the 
arguments concerning the na- 
ture of a university had been set- 
tled. Universities would be 
characterized by specialization in 
studies, professional training, 
graduate and undergraduate pro- 
grams, ongoing research by the 
faculty, and a balanced, compre- 
hensive mixture of the human- 
ities, the pure sciences, and the 
more vocational applied sciences. 

The elective system came under 
attack after 1900 for leaving 
many graduates with only a 
smattering of knowledge in a 
number of fields and faulty prepa- 
ration for specialization. Even so, 
this system had done a great deal 
toward bringing science and the 
new disciplines into equality 
with the classical collegiate sub- 
jects. What to put in its place, 
how to arrange the curriculum to 
blend the new subjects with the 
old, and how to reorganize the 
undergraduate course of study, 
were a few questions that had not 
been decided with any degree of 

Rice, neither so old as the east- 
ern schools nor so large as the 
western ones, had the chance to 
choose its entry point into the 
university world and to deter- 
mine its own emphasis. It was 
not an easy decision. On one 
hand, the Institute was dedicated 
to the advancement of literature, 
science, and art. On the other, 
there was simply not enough 
money immediately to establish 
really strong departments in 
every category. It would be possi- 
ble, however, to have the back- 
bone of a university program — 
faculty research and graduate 
training — in one area in the be- 
ginning and then to expand as 
circumstances permitted.^' 

Hence the board arrived at its 
third decision. The Rice Institute 
would first enter into a university 
program in the sciences. This 
course of instruction would also 
benefit the community. (There 
was no school of applied and pure 
science in the rapidly developing 
Houston area, and technical ex- 

pertise was at a premium.) Even 
at the start there would be a ba- 
sic core of "liberal education" 
courses considered essential to a 
university degree, but humanities 
departments would be added 
later, as resources became avail- 
able. Graduate doctoral programs 
would concentrate on mathemat- 
ics, physics, and chemistry. With 
respect to art, the trustees de- 
cided to "take architecture seri- 
ously" and provide a physical 
setting of great beauty as well as 

The Site and the 
Physical Plan 

The last decision made selection 
of an architect critical. When he 
returned to Houston, President 
Lovett wrote and then visited 
many architects throughout the 
North and East, soliciting their 
ideas for the Institute. The visits 
allowed reduction of the list of 
possible architects to three or 
four men. After much thought, 
Lovett picked and the board ap- 
proved Ralph Adams Cram of 
Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson of 
Boston. Lovett later said that his 
choice was in the end more intui- 
tive than reasoned, as he was 
more impressed by Cram's imag- 
inative grasp of the elements of 
the problem than he was by the 
other candidates'. Nevertheless, 
he made the recommendation 
somewhat reluctantly, because 
Cram was Princeton's supervis- 
ing architect and Lovett wanted 
to establish some reputation for 
independence of judgment in his 
new home.^- 


The Beginnings 


12. Ralph Adams Cram, of the Boston architectural firm of Cram. Godhue 
and Ferguson, which designed the plan and early buildings of the Rice 
Institute. Drawn by F. M. Rines from a photograph. 

To ensure that the best possi- 
ble laboratories would be built, 
Lovett organized an advisory 
committee of eminent scientists 
to help plan the structures. The 
group was composed of Joseph S. 
Ames, director of the physical 
laboratory at Johns Hopkms, 
Edwin G. Conklin, director of 
the new biological laboratory at 
Princeton, Theodore W. Richards, 

head of the department of chem- 
istry at Harvard, and Samuel W. 
Stratton, director of the National 
Bureau of Standards in Washing- 
ton. All had considerable experi- 
ence in the construction of labo- 
ratories and were knowledgeable 
about the essential equipment. "~ 

While Lovett was on his trip 
around the world, the trustees 
had bought land for the site of 

the Institute. They chose the 
acreage on Main Street that Lov- 
ett had suggested, about three 
miles from the city center. In 
June 1908 the board decided to 
purchase about 300 acres, and 
they began negotiations to ac- 
quire them. Altogether there 
were purchases of ten parcels of 
land ranging in size from under 
an acre to over 95 acres. Almost 
one-third of the acreage was pur- 
chased from George W. Hermann, 
who later gave the city of Hous- 
ton much of the adjoining land 
for a park. The board had com- 
pleted the major purchases, with 
one notable exception, by May 
1909, in time for Lovett 's return 
from abroad. The total cost was 
almost $250,000 for approxi- 
mately 290 acres." 

The exception was an eight- 
acre farm that cut into the grounds 
from Main Street. It belonged to 
Charles F. Weber, who claimed 
that he had no desire to sell any 
part of his land. Nonetheless he 
finally agreed in 19 10 to sell at a 
price of more than $7,000 per 
acre. At the time of the sale, the 
trustees made an agreement with 
Weber that allowed him to re- 
main on the land for three-and-a- 
half years. The board soon regret- 
ted its concession. As the plans 
for the site developed, Weber's 
farm rested next to the location 
of the Administration Building, 
with, some remember, a pigsty at 
the south corner of the building. 
In addition, for a time Weber had 
extended his fence onto Institute 
property. After much effort Weber 
was persuaded to move off the 
land, and the fence and other 
farm appurtenances were re- 

The Beginnings 


moved only a few days before the 
academic procession leading to 
the formal dedication would have 
been forced to change its in- 
tended route to the platform/' 

Completed, the site had five 
sides, bounded by what are today 
Main Street, Sunset and Rice 
Boulevards, Greenbriar Street, 
and University Boulevard. There 
was a bayou, Harris Gully, to be 
known by students as "the Blue 
Danube," cutting across the 
western end; today this waterway 
is channeled through a conduit 
under the parking lot of the foot- 
ball stadium. The site was flat, 
marshy, and subject to flooding. 
Trees and shrubs lined the bayou, 
and there was a small grove of 
trees near the intersection of 
Main and Sunset. Otherwise, the 
site was bare prairie land. 

Architect Cram seems to have 
been both intrigued and appalled 
by this site, which he called 
"level and stupid." With no his- 
torical or stylistic precedent in 
the vicinity and no ideas imposed 
by the president or trustees, how- 
ever, the possibilities for inven- 
tion were boundless. Cram's fav- 
orite Gothic style simply would 
not suit this site, but then nei- 
ther would colonial or Georgian 
or Spanish-Indian-Baroque. In his 
search for a style that was beauti- 
ful, southern in spirit, and con- 
tinuous with the historic and 
cultural past. Cram invented a 
new style based on elements 
from Mediterranean architecture. 
Venice and the Dalmatian coast 
offered the most promising in- 
spirations. The result has been 
called "a combination of the 
twelfth and thirteenth century 

Byzantine, Romanesque, and Ve- 
netian Gothic."^" 

In addition to deciding on a 
style. Cram had to plan at once 
for both the present and the dis- 
tant future. The school needed 
adequate and economical build- 
ings immediately; but in order to 
expand efficiently in the future 
and avoid an unorganized hodge- 
podge, it also needed a flexible 
scheme. It did not take long for 
Cram to invent three possible 
plans, all very ambitious and 
rather cluttered. The quadrangle 
system of organization was per- 
haps the one idea that survived 
all the various planning stages. 
(There were thirty-five or forty 
preliminary studies.) In the trial 
plans as well as in the final one, 
Cram proposed quadrangles for 
science, fine arts, student resi- 
dences, law, medicine, and a grad- 
uate college. Cloisters — roofed 
colonnades open on the sides — 
connected buildings within quad- 
rangles and sometimes the quad- 
rangles themselves. Since Rice 
was to be "aggressively nonsec- 
tarian" (as Cram put it)," there 
was no provision for a chapel. 
One tentative plan shows a Greek 
amphitheater with an artificial 
lake constructed along the bayou, 
and the final one called for re- 
flecting pools in the first quad- 
rangle to heighten the Venetian 
effect. These pools were never 
built, possibly because of Lovett's 
misgivings, although the presi- 
dent did consider lining them 
with concrete and stocking them 
with small fish to deal with mos- 
quito larvae. " 

In spite of Cram's multitudes 
of ideas, or perhaps because of 

them, it took months to arrive at 
a mutually agreeable general 
plan. What Cram suggested, the 
board or Lovett changed, and vice 
versa. Buildings were moved on 
paper and moved again. A trip to 
Houston by Cram and Goodhue 
at the end of November 1909 
helped to clarify some items and 
resulted in cost estimates, but it 
left many problems unsolved. 
The architects were hardly back 
in Boston before Lovett wrote 
that the preliminary floor plan 
for the Administration Building 
allotted too much space to activi- I i 
ties of secondary importance, ' 

such as a museum and a trustees' 
room. Lovett wanted a practical, 
purely academic arrangement 
with space for classrooms, con- < 

ference areas, lecture rooms, and 
a library He was also dissatis- 
fied with the placement of the 
physical laboratory group and the 

Linchpin to the entire arrange- 
ment was the location of the Ad- 
ministration Building, and that 
proved especially difficult to set- 
tle. Part of the difficulty was cre- 
ated by the Weber farm, not yet 
purchased, but part was due to 
the aesthetics of the plot. To one 
of Lovett's arrangements Cram 
replied that there were "no dis- 
tinguished architectural composi- 
tions," and in fact, he called it "a 
catastrophe from an architectural 

The location of the Admin- 
istration Building on a line ori- 
ented east-west or north-south 
also determined its floor plan and 
its exterior appearance. As the 
building was moved about, so the 
ground-floor arcades were moved 


The Beginnings 

from one side of tlie building to 
the other. By March 1910, Cram 
was moved to ask, 

How can you not place some 
reliance in us as your chosen ar- 
chitects when it comes to a mat- 
ter that, like this, is one almost 
wholly of designl It seems to us 
that it is really our function to 
determine more or less questions 
of this nature. Where cost, prac- 
tical considerations, or the sacri- 
fice of valuable space is con- 
cerned, it is, of course your duty 
to pass upon everything we sug- 
gest, but while we welcome 
every particle of assistance you 
can give us from an artistic 
standpoint, we must admit that 
this case of the Rice Institute is 
the only one we have ever had in 
our experience where the highest 
authorities were so exceedingly 
conscientious as to strictly archi- 
tectural considerations.' 

Where cost was concerned, the 
trustees certainly knew their 
duty, to Cram's exasperation. Be- 
cause of some confusion over the 
cost of the buildings — Cram esti- 
mated forty cents per cubic foot, 
but the trustees thought twenty- 
five cents adequate — the trustees 
had not signed a formal contract 
or begun to pay the commis- 
sion. The architects were under- 
standably upset. Producing plans, 
sketches, and specifications cost 
them money. They pdinted out to 
Lovett that every one of their 
other clients paid for estimates, 
even the United States govern- 
ment. This was the first time in 
their twenty-two years of experi- 
ence that a client had demanded 
that they wait until contracts 

were assigned before paying. 
Lovett later commented that 
"team work was not always easy 
with trustees sitting tight on 
the money bags and an archi- 
tect's imagination soaring to the 
stars. "'" 

On April 27, 19 10, the Board of 
Trustees formally approved the 
architect's plans. Bids were in- 
vited, and on June 27, 19 10, a 
contract was signed with the firm 
of William Miller & Sons Com- 
pany of Pittsburgh for the con- 
struction of the Administration 
Building. In September the same 
firm also won contracts for 
the Mechanical Laboratory and 
powerhouse combination. Ap- 
proximate costs, exclusive of 
contents, were $400,000 for 
the Administration Building, 
$235,000 for the power plant and 
Mechanical Laboratory, and 
$420,000 for the first residential 
group. -^ 

As finally accepted, the general 
plan provided for every con- 
tingency of expansion. From the 
Institute's main entrance at the 
corner nearest the city, the road 
to the Administration Building 
branched off at a thirty-degree an- 
gle. This approach led to the cen- 
tral axis of the plan: a clear view 
through the Sallyport in the Ad- 
ministration Building westward 
to the far edge of the campus, a 
distance of approximately one 
mile. Before the quadrangle was 
closed by construction of Fon- 
dren Library in 1949, the Sally- 
port framed the setting sun dur- 
ing the summer months. To be 
lined with oak trees, the road 
from the entrance to the Admin- 
istration Building stretched about 

a quarter of a mile, ending in a 
forecourt. On one side of the 
court (according to the plan) was 
to be built the School of Fine 
Arts and on the other a residen- 
tial college for women. The road 
divided at the Administration 
Building and rounded each end of 
the building to continue in two 
oak-lined drives parallel to the 
main axis, about 700 feet apart. 
Passing through the Sallyport, 
one entered the court of the first 
academic group. Cram envi- 
sioned this court surrounded on 
three sides by five buildings with 
cloisters facing the court. Mea- 
suring 300 by 500 feet, the garden 
within was to be planted in cy- 
presses. Beyond this group opened 
a larger court planted with live 
oaks and surrounded by more 
academic buildings. At the ex- 
treme west end of the second 
court was to be a pool and Greek 

Secondary axes lay perpendicu- 
lar to the main axis. The first of 
these began on Main Street and 
ran north past the dormitories, 
through the first academic court 
to the Mechanical Laboratory 
and powerhouse. Those buildings 
were the first in the engineering 
quadrangle. The first north-south 
axis lay east of the student dor- 
mitories. The second ran through 
the middle of the dormitory group, 
across the larger academic court, 
and was intended to end in an- 
other quadrangle containing the 
Graduate School and its profes- 
sional departments. 

The residential quadrangle was 
to have its own east-west axis, 
parallel to the main axis, with 
dormitories on two sides, a stu- 

The Beginnings 


•"^i^;-:: .!.•:: 

13. Final plan for the Institute, drawn by the firm of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson. 

dent union at the eastern end, 
and a gymnasium and athletic 
stadium at the west end. The ar- 
chitects provided for facuhy resi- 
dences, including a president's 
house on the east side of the 
campus off Sunset Boulevard. If 
all these proposed structures 
were built, there would still be 
room for professional schools 
such as law and medicine in the 
third of the campus that was left 
untouched. Cram's spacious 
plan would allow pleasing vistas 
through the campus and would 
avoid crowding buildings meanly 

together in a muddle in the way 
that several of the older eastern 
schools had done. Cram's plan 
also oriented buildings to take 
advantage of the prevailing south- 
erly breezes, a necessity in the 
days before air conditioning. 
Open spaces, high ceilings, large 
windows, and one-room-thick 
buildings would help counteract 
the oppressive Houston heat. 
Considering the semitropical cli- 
mate, one understands why Rice 
would have no summer session 
(until 1977) and why the faculty, 
more often than not from cooler 

climates, would abandon the city 
for the mountains and other 
more temperate locales during 
the summer months.'" 

The First Buildings 

Gem of the campus, then and 
now, was the Administration 
Building, now called Lovett Hall. 
Ralph Adams Cram, who left the 
actual construction supervision 
to a representative from the Bos- 
ton office (architect William 
Ward Watkin, who would later 


The Beginnings 

14. Early stages of construction of the Administration Building, now called 
Lovett Hall. The flat and marshy site made it necessary to construct 
gangplanks in order to avoid the standing water. 

15. William Ward Watkin, who 
supervised construction of the early 
buildings for Cram, Goodhue and 
Ferguson and stayed at Rice to 
establish the architecture 

16. Construction of the Administration Building. iVlay 

17. The nearly completed Administration Building. 

The Beginnings 


18. The finished building, showing the Mechanical Laboratory to the right. 

found the university's architec- 
ture program), is said to have ex- 
claimed in surprise and dehght 
when he first saw the completed 
structure. In this building can be 
seen all the elements that Cram 
drew together — vaulted Byzan- 
tine cloisters, Dalmatian brick- 
work, marbled columns, sculp- 
tured capitals. Cram used all the 
color he could command. A spe- 
cial rose-hued brick contrasts 
harmoniously with gray mortar. 
Marble for the columns and 
sheathing came from the Ozark 
Mountains, Greece, Italy, Swit- 
zerland, Vermont, and Tennessee. 
A frieze of blue tile runs under 
the marble cornice, and glazed 
tile decorates the tower facades. 
Carved column capitals embody 
caricatures of ancient and mod- 
ern scientists and humanists, 
football players, women students, 
and a few strange beasts frolick- 
ing beneath the arches. At the 

four corners of the Sallyport 
muse representatives of the fresh- 
man through senior classes, the 
freshman looking hilariously 
happy, the senior studiously 

The building itself is 300 feet 
long and 50 feet deep. Its three 
stories are deceptive. Because of 
the high ceilings, each flight of 
stairs seems a story and a half to 
the climber. A sallyport thirty 
feet high runs through the center 
of the building; above it was lo- 
cated President Lovett's office. It 
is said that Lovett wanted his of- 
fice to be placed over a sallyport 
as was Woodrow Wilson's at 
Princeton, but he had not reck- 
oned on the height of the one in 
his new building. Two flights of 
stairs, one on either side of the 
Sallyport, led to the office; Lovett 
told a student later that there 
were seventy-seven steps on the 
south side and seventy-eight on 

the north, but that they came out 
to the same height. Hubert Bray 
of the mathematics department 
immortalized Lovett's location in 
a limerick: 

A great man is Edgar O. Lovett. 

His office has nothing above it. 

It is four stories high. 

As close to the sky. 

As William Ward Watkin 

could shove it.'" 

Because of the Sallyport and 
the need for cross ventilation, 
the floor plan of the building 
eliminated interior halls, except 
for the stairwells. Most rooms 
stretched completely across the 
building. The Administration 
Building did double and triple 
duty, especially in the-early days 
of the Institute, containing ad- 
ministrative offices, professors' 
offices, classrooms, seminar 
rooms, the library, a lounge and 
study room for women, and a 


The Beginnings 

19. View through the completed Sallyport. October 6. 1912. 

The Beginnings 


20. The completed Faculty Chamber, with light fixtures and other details in place. 


The Beginnings 

21. President Lovett's office on the fourth floor of the Administration Building. 

The Beginnings 


22. Boys' Study in the Administration Building. 


The Beginnings 

23. Classroom on the third floor of the Administration Building. 


"»;-i^'^BS*»s-i ■ 

24. Construction photograph of the Mechanical Engmeering Laboratorv and 
powerhouse, probably 1912. 

study for men. The two-storied 
Faculty Chamber took the place 
of an auditorium until the phys- 
ics amphitheater was added m 

The Mechanical Laboratory, 
machine shop, and powerhouse 
complex sat at the head of the 
second major axis. Similar to the 
Administration Building but by 
no means as intricate, the com- 
plex had a facade that echoed the 
cloisters of the other buildings 
and repeated the color scheme. 
The smokestack for the power- 
house boiler was disguised as a 
campanile, which historian An- 
drew Forest Muir called an "un- 
fortunate piece of architectural 
hypocrisy." As originally con- 
structed, the campanile had "a 
hideous shingled skirt" near the 
top that repeated the roof line of 
the building beneath it. (It was 
removed when lightning struck it 
in the 1930s.) Heat, light, and 
water were delivered from the 
powerhouse to the other build- 
ings through a tunnel network of 
considerable size and length. 
Central heating would eliminate 
the need for fireplaces, although 
there would be a few in the Ad- 
ministration Building.-^ 

For the men students, one resi- 
dential hall and the Commons 
were to open in 1912. The gen- 
eral plan for South Fiall (now 
known as Will Rice College), 
a three-story structure with a 
tower of five stories, would be re- 
peated in East and West Halls 
(Baker and Hanszen Colleges) 
within a few years. East and 
South Halls connected with the 
Commons (now the Baker Col- 
lege commons) by cloisters; West 

The Beginnings 


25. The completed Mechanical Engineering Laboratory with landscaping. "Mr. Dennis" is in the foreground. 

Hall stood across the road. The 
Commons was the dining hall for 
all residents and had its own 
tower where a few single faculty 
members and graduate students 

No university is complete 
without a touch of heraldry, and 
the Rice Institute would have its 
colors, shield, and patron saints. 
Pierre de Chaignon la Rose of 
Cambridge, Massachusetts, de- 

signed the shield, combining ele- 
ments of the arms of several 
families having the names Rice 
and Houston. Some of these 
coats of arms had both chevrons 
and three avian charges, and la 
Rose adapted these for the Insti- 
tute. In the official shield a dou- 
ble chevron divides the field, and 
the charges are the owls of Athena 
as they appear on a small Greek 
coin, the silver tetradrachmenon 

of the fifth century B.C. Choosing 
colors was more difficult than de- 
signing the shield, because it was 
not proper to duplicate the colors 
of another institution. At the 
same time, the designer wanted 
to harmonize the appearance of 
the new shield with state and na- 
tional colors. The colors also 
needed to be easily procurable 
and appropriate to the climate: 
colorful but not hot, delicate but 


The Beginnings 

26. Dining room of the Commons, now Baker College commons. 

The Beginnings 


27. The Commons kitchen. 


The Beginnings 

28-30. Figures curved into the 
Administration Building capitals by 
sculptor Oswald /. Lassig. 28. 
Darwin. 29. DeLesseps. 30. 

31-32. Exterior plaques on the 
Administration Builduig. 31. Plaque 
dedicated to science. 32. Plaque 
dedicated to art. 

The Beginnings 



KEBUlLDlNC^-iK- i 







The Beginnings 

33. Ceremony laying the cornerstone of the Administration Building, March 
2, 1911. 

B0YA€C9AI ^.AKim MP \ 

- .:. riMiN^repcuNvof- 

34. I he cornerstone of the Administration lUiiUlinK- I uuisUncd. the 
inscription reads. " 'Rather.' said Democritus. 'wouhl I discover the cause of 
one fact than become King of the Persians.'" 

not lifeless. The final choices 
were Confederate gray enlivened 
by a tinge of lavender and a blue 
deeper than the Oxford blue.' 

Into the capitals of the Admin- 
istration Building's cloister were 
carved effigies of the "patron 
saints" of the new Institute. Six- 
teen men represented the univer- 
sity's various disciplines. For 
example, Thucydides symbolized 
history, Ferdinand de Lesseps en- 
gineering, Charles Darwin biol- 
ogy, and Pierre Curie studies in 
radioactivity. An Austrian sculp- 
tor, Oswald Lassig, carved the 
capitals after they had been put 
in place. Fie and his workers were 
also responsible for the other 
carvings on the building. The ex- 
terior walls of the Faculty Cham- 
ber displayed tablets carved with 
inscriptions to the concepts of 
letters, science, and art, selected 
from the writings of Fiomer, Isaac 
Newton, and Leonardo da Vinci. 
Flanking the Sallyport on the 
cloister side were two more tab- 
lets — dedicated to science and 
art — with life-sized, draped sym- 
bolic female figures and appropri- 
ate dicta from the writings of 
Aristotle and Plotinus. 

Construction Begins 

In a simple ceremony the cor- 
nerstone for the Administration 
Building was laid March 2, 19 11, 
the seventy-fifth anniversary of 
Texas's independence from Mex- 
ico. (Lovett had hoped to lay it on 
Washington's birthday, but those 
plans went awry.) On dedication 
day the trustees were present, 
and Captain James Baker wielded 

The Beginnings 


the trowel. Deposited m the 
stone was a sealed copper box 
containing a copy of the King 
James version of the Bible, the 
charter of the Institute tran- 
scribed on parchment, a brief bi- 
ography of William Marsh Rice, 
short sketches of the careers of 
the trustees, a photograph of the 
general site plan and buildings, a 
copy of the Houston Chronicle of 
January 12, 191 1, and a copy of 
the Houston Daily Post of Janu- 
ary 18, 191 1. The stone itself, 
Ozark marble, is on the forecourt 
side of the Sallyport. On it are 
the shield of the Institute, the 
date, and the shield of the state of 
Texas. The inscription below is a 
Greek quotation in Byzantine let- 
tering from the Praepaiatio Evan- 
gelica of Eusebius Pamphili, 
which reads in English, " 'Rather,' 
said Democritus, 'would I dis- 
cover the cause of one fact than 
become King of the Persians.""" 

Construction continued 
throughout 1911 and into 191 2. 
Workmen excavated tunnels and 

laid drains, buildings sprang up 
above ground, and the Teas Nur- 
sery Company under the direc- 
tion of Edward Teas, Sr., planted 
trees and shrubs along the new 
gravel walks and roads. Gravel 
was chosen instead of asphalt or 
concrete for both walkways and 
roads because it harmonized with 
the architecture, although some 
people would later claim that 
Lovett wanted it because Prince- 
ton University had gravel walks. 
The construction did not proceed 
fast enough to suit some of the 
citizens of Houston. The Hous- 
ton Post declared in November 
191 1, " 'Some tremendous event 
is going to mark the end of time 
and the beginning of eternity,' 
says a Richmond divine. If he is 
alluding to the anticipated com- 
pletion of the Rice Institute, we 
desire to state it would be too 
late to be of service to the boys of 
today." And again in December, 
"Time may be divided into four 
grand periods, viz., past, present, 
future, and the twilight zone 

which may or may not mark the 
completion of the Rice 

By May 19 12 the board had de- 
cided to set the opening of the 
school for September 23 of that 
year, the twelfth anniversary of 
the founder's death. They were 
worried that the buildings would 
not be completed and called upon 
supervising architect Watkm and 
representatives of the construc- 
tion companies to state firm 
dates for completion. The trust- 
ees instructed Watkin to put ex- 
tra men on the job if it became 
necessary.^' They were deter- 
mined to open the Institute on 


The Formative Years 

Completed buildings were un- 
doubtedly important to the Insti- 
tute, but its ultnnate success 
would depend on two other fac- 
tors: the faculty and the student 
body. President Lovett wanted to 
obtain an outstanding faculty be- 
cause he knew that without one, 
good students would not come. 
The trustees, aware of the im- 
portance of a first-rate faculty, 
agreed. Upon returning from 
an inspection trip of European 
schools in 1908, trustee J. E. Mc- 
Ashan reported, "My interviews 
with educators lead me to believe 
that the only way we can com- 
mand patronage is to have men 
and apparatus that will challenge 
the appreciation of the earnest 
students of the world, who desire 
to achieve success, and not cater 
too much to those students who 
only go to college as a matter of 
good form."' 

Selecting the Faculty 

While one purpose of Lovett's 
own long trip in 1908-09 was to 
seek recommendations for fac- 
ulty members, he could not actu- 
ally hire anyone until the open- 
ing date had been set. During 
1 9 10 and 191 1, hopeful candi- 
dates from all over the United 
States sent letters of inquiry 
along with their credentials and 
recommendations; it appears, 
however, that their efforts were 
in vain. Lovett wanted faculty 
members who were found through 
his own endeavors instead of 
those who found him. He was 
particularly interested in secur- 
ing a good physicist and a good 
mathematician. He was able to 
hire both. 

From Sir John Joseph Thom- 
son, world-renowned physicist of 
the Cavendish Laboratory at 
Cambridge, Lovett received a list 
of outstanding men in physics. 
Of the five on the list, he talked 
seriously with two, P. V. Bevan 

and H. A. Wilson, both former 
Fellows of Trinity College, Cam- 
bridge. In 1912 Bevan was pro- 
fessor of physics at the Royal 
Halloway College for Women, 
University of London, and Wil- 
son was professor of physics at 
McGill University in Montreal. 
Some of the difficulties that Lov- 
ett had in hiring faculty members 
were evident in negotiations with 
these two men. 

Everyone mentioned the in- 
famous Houston climate at some 
point in his discussions. Besides 
the city's reputation for debilitat- 
ing heat and humidity, there were 
old fears of yellow fever and ma- 
laria that had not yet been laid to 
rest. Wilson thought that it 
would be undesirable to attempt 
any summer work; "I have been 
very healthy all my life but I con- 
fess very hot weather makes me 
very limp and unable to do 
much," he wrote.' 

Prospective members of the 
faculty considered isolation from 
other centers of learning to be an- 

The Formative Years 


other drawback. Scholars engaged 
in research wanted to be able to 
discuss their findings with others 
in their fields, and as yet Texas 
had few such colleagues to offer. 
Bevan expressed an interest m 
participating in the launching of 
a new school with fine propects, 
but the advantages of his post 
in London were too great. When 
Bevan finally turned Lovett down, 
the only reasons he gave were 
"fear for the health of my chil- 
dren and doubts as to their edu- 
cation." Texas still seemed part 
of the frontier to many 

It appears that Lovett tried to 
hire at salaries on the low side, 
but the market was unusual. He 
had to sell the idea of the new 
Institute to prospective candi- 
dates as much as they had to sell 
their qualifications to him. Bevan 
spoke of outside sources of in- 
come that were available in En- 
gland but not in TexaS; he did 
not think that Lovett offered 
enough inducement to leave the 
old associations. Wilson negoti- 
ated not only for a higher salary 
than the one offered but also for a 
research assistant and, at times 
during the discussions, a house. 

In the end, Lovett had to pay 
well to attract good men from 
abroad. He wrote later that the 
trustees adopted uniformity of 
neither compensation nor rank, 
and that is evident in the final 
salary schedules. For the first few 
years professors earned between 
$4,000 and $6,000 a year, as- 
sistant professors between $1,200 
and $3,600, and instructors be- 
tween $900 and $1,500. This was 
not out of line with what Har- 

vard was paying its faculty at that 
time, although the bottom range 
of the assistant professors' salary 
was low. President Lovett re- 
ceived $10,000 in 1 91 2, plus lodg- 
ing for himself and his family, 
which included Mrs. Lovett and 
three children, Adelaide, Henry 
Malcolm, and Laurence Alex- 
ander, who had moved to Hous- 
ton early in 1909." 

Research-minded men like 
Wilson were somewhat con- 
cerned that they would not have 
enough time to devote to re- 
search in a new school. Wilson 
expected a lot of work connected 
with organization and establish- 
ment but thought that a year or 
two would be sufficient to get his 
department properly started. The 
teaching load was also bound to 
be heavy until more professors 
were hired, although some fac- 
ulty members were even more 
annoyed at having to teach lower- 
division courses. Teaching begin- 
ning students had its special 
problems, among them boredom 
for the professor. A few teachers 
had other prejudices as well. For 
example, mathematician Griffith 
C. Evans, recommended by Ital- 
ian mathematician Volterra, did 
not particularly look forward to 
teaching engineering students.' 

Despite these difficulties. Pres- 
ident Lovett managed to as- 
semble a faculty of considerable 
promise. Present for duty the 
first year as professor of physics 
was Harold A. Wilson, Fellow of 
the Royal Society, Fellow of Trin- 
ity College, Cambridge, former 
professor at King's College, Lon- 
don, and research professor of 
physics at McGill. Besides Lov- 

ett, who was listed as professor 
of mathematics, there was one 
other full professor, Thomas 
Lindsey Blayney, who had earned 
his Ph.D. at Heidelberg Univer- 
sity and was professor of Euro- 
pean literature and the history of 
European art at Central Univer- 
sity in Kentucky. Blayney would 
teach German at Rice. 

Lovett's only assistant pro- 
fessor was Griffith C. Evans, 
Sheldon Fellow at Harvard Uni- 
versity. His field was mathemat- 
ics, and his Harvard professors 
had given him excellent recom- 
mendations. He wrote that he 
hoped to get a position at a "re- 
spectable" university but did not 
have any good offers until two 
came at once, one from Rice and 
one from Yale. He chose Rice." 

Instructors included Philip H. 
Arbuckle, former director of ath- 
letics at Southwestern Univer- 
sity, who was to develop an ath- 
letic program and teach English if 
necessary; electrical engineer 
Francis E. Johnson, previously 
with the British Columbia Electric 
Railway Company; John T. Mc- 
Cants, a Yale graduate who had 
been Lovett's private secretary 
since 19 10 and who would teach 
English; and William Ward Wat- 
kin, with his degree in architec- 
ture from the University of Penn- 
sylvania, who stayed to establish 
the architecture department after 
supervising construction of the 
first buildings for Cram, Goodhue 
and Ferguson. William F. Edwards 
was named lecturer in chemistry; 
he had been president of the Uni- 
versity of Washington. 

Listed as members of the fac- 
ulty but not present for the first 


35- The first faculty with board members, 1912. Left to right: Wilham F. Edwards, Francis E. Johnson, Thomas 
Lindsey Blayney. Phihp H. Arbuckle. Edgar Odell Lovett. Benjamin Botts Rice. William Ward Watkin, Emanuel 
Raphael, Griffith C. Evans, lames E. McAshan, John T. McCants. lames Addison Baker. Ir.. Harold A. Wilson. 

year were Percy I. Daniell and 
lulian S. Huxley. I. ]. Thomson 
had recommended Daniell for ap- 
plied mathematics; Daniell had 
been the last senior Wrangler (for 
special first class honors in math- 
ematics) at Cambridge. Huxley, a 
biologist, was the grandson of 

Thomas H. Huxley, the well- 
known defender of the Darwin- 
ian theory, lulian Huxley was 
also a scholar of Balliol College 
and university lecturer at Oxford. 
Daniell and Huxley were listed 
as research associates in 191 2 
and received traveling fellow- 

ships of $1,000 each from the In- 
stitute for that school year. They 
also had three-year appointments 
as assistant professors with the 
Institute; specific appointments 
appear to have been given only to 


The Classes Begin 

That other necessity of a univer- 
sity — students — appeared on the 
day of matriculation, September 
23, 1912. Fifty-nine young men 
and women made their way out 
to the end of Main Street to regis- 
ter at the new school. President 
Lovett turned matriculation into 
another ceremony. After registra- 
tion, the students, faculty, trust- 
ees, and many visitors who had 
come to see the first day of the 
Institute gathered in the Faculty 
Chamber of the Administration 
Building to hear an address by 

The president's matriculation 
address in 1912 was the begin- 
ning of a Rice tradition. Lovett 
said later that he thought it only 
appropriate to address the new 
first class, and he prepared his re- 
marks with great care. In 191 3 he 
thought it just as well to repeat 
the performance, and by 1914 the 
matriculation address had be- 
come a custom. So also was the 
handshake with each student at 
the conclusion of the address. 
Lovett missed only one matricu- 
lation address, in 1937, when he 
did not return in time from a trip 
to Europe; he had to be content 
with mailing it to the school 

newspaper for publication. The 
speech became famous for its 
high idealism and classical allu- 
sions and for Lovett's felicity 
with words, an ability recognized 
by all who heard him or who read 
his written prose. Trustee A. S. 
Cleveland later remarked that 
when the board needed to write a 
memorial or another announce- 
ment, they always asked Lovett 
to compose it, and "concern for 
adequate expression vanishe|d|." 
The matriculation address, how- 
ever, did not always come easily 
to Lovett. He wrote in 1935 that 
the thought of another speech 
gave him "a sickening jolt, for in 

36. Registration day for the first Rice Institute students, September 2}, 191 2. 


The Formative Years 

|une I am utterly bankrupt m 
ideas and always m despair of 
ever bemj^ able to think out a 
twenty-minute matriculation ad- 
dress again.'"* 

Classes began the next day, 
September 24. The students in 
the first class soon numbered 
seventy-seven, and approximately 
one-third of them were women. 
Most of the students had come 
from the Houston area, but there 
were a few from such places as 
Weatherford, San Angelo, Cisco, 
and Crockett, Texas, one from 
Lake Charles, Louisiana, and, ac- 
cording to the 191 5 catalog, even 
one from San Diego, California. 
Admission requirements were 
not stringent by the standards of 
the 1980s, but they were difficult 
enough to meet in 19 12. A cer- 
tificate of graduation from an ac- 
credited public or private high 
school or successful examination 
in the entrance subjects was only 
the beginning. In addition to 
character references, a student 
also needed fourteen high school 
units (a unit representing a course 
of study pursued five hours a 
week for an academic year). 
Three units were to be in En- 
glish, two-and-a-half in mathe- 
matics, two in history, and three 
in one foreign language or two in 
each of two modern languages. 
Applicants who did not have the 
required units could be admitted, 
on condition that they remove 
the deficiency by course work or 
tests before they could be ac- 
cepted as candidates for a degree." 

Since there were so few faculty 
members, all freshmen took the 
same subjects, with the excep- 
tion of engineering students, who 

took an extra course in engineer- 
ing drawing, and architects, who 
took architectural work in place 
of chemistry. With these excep- 
tions, everyone took English, 
German, physics, mathematics, 
and chemistry. It was a full load. 
Here began the infamous Math 
100, required of all students no 
matter what their majors. In 191s 
Math 100 consisted of trig- 
onometry, analytic geometry, and 
advanced algebra; but by the 
1920s, at the latest, calculus had 
been added (some said it took 
over), and the tales of taking 
Math 100 three or four times be- 
came well known. 

Physics 100 under H. A. Wil- 
son was no easy subject, either. 
Wilson did not really have that 
special quality needed to teach 
beginners, although he was excel- 
lent with upper-level students. 
One alumna of the class of 191 8 
reports that Wilson lectured 
twice a week,- on Fridays instruc- 
tor Claude Heaps came in and 
taught the physics on which Wil- 
son had lectured the other two 

President Lovett was deter- 
mined to make Rice a true uni- 
versity and to uphold generally 
accepted university standards. 
Therefore, the instruction and 
work required may have been 
somewhat more difficult than 
many freshmen expected. The 
school year consisted of three 
terms, the first ending before 
Christmas, the second about the 
middle of March, and the third 
in June. By the end of the first 
term, about twenty percent of the 
first freshman class had failed so 
many of their subjects that they 

were asked to withdraw. One ex- 
planation for so many failures 
was that in many high schools 
students could be exempted from 
examinations if their average 
grades were high. All students 
coming to Rice were highly ranked 
in their former schools and thus 
not accustomed to taking ex- 
aminations. Since they did not 
know how to study for them, 
many failed. 

One irate father, who had re- 
ceived one of Lovett's letters ex- 
plaining that his son would not 
be permitted to continue that 
year, protested the school's ac- 
tion. He complained of the "in- 
calculable injury" done to the 
"boys" who failed, to their par- 
ents, and to the community; he 
claimed that his son's ambitions 
had been crushed. When Lovett 
replied that the Institute's aspira- 
tions of service and scholarship 
demanded maintenance of high 
standards and that he believed 
the student would persist in his 
academic plans, the father was 
not satisfied. He wanted a second 
chance for those who had failed 
an "exceptionally and unexpec- 
tedly severe" examination com- 
ing after such a brief experi- 
mental period, part of which was 
"largely devoted to football." He 
did not think that William Marsh 
Rice would have been so strict. 
Lovett, however, stuck by his 
standards; the students were not 
readmitted until the next school 
year, when they had to begin the 
course of study all over." 

Those students who survived 
their first year and those who 
came in later years had to con- 
tend with other difficulties. Sim- 

The Formative Years 


ply getting to the Institute for 
class could be arduous for men 
who lived off campus and for the 
women, all of whom lived off 
campus. Main Street was paved 
out to Eagle Street (where a Sears 
store is now located); a dirt and 
shell road ran from there to the 
Institute and beyond. Two cattle 
gates barred the path, and pas- 
sengers could make themselves 
useful to the driver of a car by 
opening and shutting the gates. 
Passengers might also be of help 
if the car got stuck in a hole or in 
the frequent mud. A possibly 
apocryphal story is told about a 
farmer who used to water the 
road from time to time so he 
could make a little extra money 
pulling cars out of the mud. 

For those with no transporta- 
tion of their own, there was a 
trolley line. The South End street- 
car came out Fannin Street to Ea- 
gle, where those bound for the 
Institute had to change to a shut- 
tle car known by students as the 
"Toonerville trolley." It ran every 
hour on a projection of Fannm 
Street to Bellaire Boulevard (now 
Fiolcombe Boulevard) and turned 
west there to the isolated village 
of Bellaire. Once passengers had 
disembarked at the Institute, 
they faced another obstacle if it 
had been raining. Mud and stand- 
ing water often stretched from 
the raised track to the entrance 
gate. A wooden walkway was 
built over the water, but getting 
to the Administration Building 
could still be messy. If students 
missed the trolley, their only re- 
course was to walk out the track. 
The first yearbook paid tribute to 
the weary marchers with a car- 

toon in which the motorman 
cried, "Doggone it! There's al- 
ways a cow or a professor on the 

Those with early classes some- 
times had trouble getting to Ea- 
gle in time to catch the trolley. 
Once, an alumna relates, she and 
three or four others were stand- 
ing there late wondering what to 
do, when Dr. Lovett, also late, 
came up. He arranged to get a jit- 
ney and invited the students to 
ride with him. Lovett was often 
on the trolley with the students, 
but this jitney ride was some- 
what more exciting for them 
than the usual shuttle." 

The Position of Women 

Women had special problems 
at the Institute. In the first 
place, some were not so sure that 
they were wanted. The charter 
called for "a thorough polytech- 
nic school, for males and fe- 
males," so women had to be 
admitted; but no particular provi- 
sions were made for them. Lovett 
later proclaimed his pride in the 
"unusually fine group of young 
women" who bore "their full 
share in making and maintaining 
the good name of the Rice Insti- 
tute," but he also thought the 
best form of academic organiza- 
tion was found in places such as 
Harvard and Oxford where sepa- 
rate women's undergraduate col- 
leges existed. If Lovett and some 
of the other faculty members 
were disinclined to teach women, 
their attitude might be traced to 
their own careers in all-male in- 
stitutions, as both students and 

teachers. Some women noticed a 
certain amount of nervousness in 
their male instructors who had to 
face a room full of female stu- 
dents not much younger than 
they were." 

The curriculum certainly pro- 
vided no "women's" courses. 
The absence of such courses as 
home economics drew some crit- 
icism around town, the Chroni- 
cle claiming that an institution 
that did not take into account the 
"inclinations" and "leanings" of 
women for courses in the domes- 
tic sciences, art, and pedagogy 
was not truly coeducational. 
President Lovett is reported to 
have considered such courses to 
be fads and out of keeping with 
the aims of the Institute. Lei Red 
'i6 tells the story that when her 
mother called the school to find 
out what the course offerings 
would be and heard about all the 
science and mathematics, she 
commented that they did not 
sound like what a girl would like 
to take. The person on the phone 
at the Institute replied, "No, it 
really doesn't. We don't encour- 
age girls to come." Her mother 
answered that they could come if 
they wanted to, and Miss Red's 
father took her out to the campus 
on the day it opened." 

Whatever the Chronicle's 
claims about inclinations and 
leanings, it appears that few 
women, if any, felt deprived be- 
cause there were no "women's" 
courses. And despite the attitude 
of some of the professors, all 
courses were open to any student 
who could pass muster. Everyone 
took the same subjects, at the 
same speed and with the same 


The Formative Years 

intensity. Women may not have 
felt over-welcome on first arrival, 
and at the first registration some 
did not sign up for a full sched- 
ule. But any woman, or man, 
who wanted a thorough educa- 
tion could find It at the Institute.'' 

At any rate, the women were 
there. No dormitories were built 
for them, and therefore they had 
to live off campus; but so did 
many of the men. A large room 
was set aside at the north end of 
the second floor of the Admin- 
istration Building (where the 
provost's office is now located), 
and there the women could study, 
relax, or eat lunch. They could 
also go to the Commons to lunch 
with the men; but Sara Stratford, 
stenographer in the president's 
office, went along to chaperone. 
Mrs. Stratford also made certain 
that all women were off campus 
by 5:00 P.M., when she left to go 
home. Young ladies simply did 
not stay on campus by them- 
selves. Neither were any benches 
placed invitingly under shade 
trees — for fear that two students 
of opposite sexes might sit to- 
gether on them. 

For reasons unspoken but 
easily conjectured, classes were 
divided by gender that first year. 
When the women came out of 
class, the men would line up on 
both sides of the hall or cloister 
to watch, to the great excitement 
of all. But the second year saw an 
end to this practice of segrega- 
tion, probably because of the in- 
creased enrollment and small 
faculty but also possibly because 
the women had proved that they 
could keep up with the men aca- 
demically. (However, there would 

continue to be some sections of 
Math 100 only for women.) That 
second year saw a continuation 
of what became known as "clois- 
ter courses," or "Sallyport 100" 
(when students gathered in the 
cloisters for conversation), and 
the cloisters and the Sallyport of 
the Administration Building be- 
came and remained the center 
of campus student life. In 191 5 
Mrs. Stratford was appointed ad- 
viser to women, but the duties 
of her office were unclear; she 
seems to have been more of a 
chaperone than anything else." 

Early Campus Life 

The first occupants of on-campus 
residential halls must have felt 
to some extent that they were 
camping out. When classes 
started, the dormitory building 
was still unfinished; the young 
men were only able to move in as 
rooms were completed. The first 
meals were prepared on kerosene 
stoves and were served in kitchen 
staff quarters on the second floor 
of the Commons, because the 
floor had not yet been laid on the 
main level. Tables were made by 
spreading planks across saw- 
horses. The dining room floor 
was completed in time for the 
formal opening banquet, how- 
ever; tired of creamed chipped 
beef, the boys were happy to see 
the real kitchen in operation." 
The first four classes began 
many traditions at Rice. Presi- 
dent Lovett seemed anxious that 
the school have the right tradi- 
tions, that no practice start that 
anyone would later regret. One of 

the first traditions established 
was the honor system for exam- 
inations. Each student had to 
sign the pledge, "On my honor, I 
have neither given nor received 
any aid on this examination," at 
the end of each test. The student- 
elected Honor Council decided 
cases of infractions as proclaimed 
in the Honor Council constitu- 
tion. The most extreme penalty 
available to the council was a 
recommendation that the of- 
fender be expelled. Final disposi- 
tion was in the hands of the pres- 
ident. This system, only slightly 
modified, is still in use today." 

In the residential halls, men 
had a great deal of freedom for 
the first two years. President 
Lovett referred to the halls as 
gentlemen's clubs, regulated by 
no other code than "the common 
understanding by which gen- 
tlefolk determine their conduct 
of life." Numbers, however, made 
a difference; and some of the 
more obstreperous students, tast- 
ing freedom from home for the 
first time, necessitated establish- 
ment of the Hall Committee. 
Theoretically the Honor Council 
had general authority over the 
students, but in practice it con- 
fined itself to violations of the 
honor code as applied to pa- 
pers and examinations. The Hall 
Committee ran the dormitories, 
making and enforcing rules by 
which the "gentlemen's clubs" 
were to run.' 

Lovett had seen the honor sys- 
tem in practice at both the Uni- 
versity of Virginia and Princeton 
University. He had also observed 
Woodrow Wilson's attempt to 
abolish exclusive student clubs at 

The Formative Years 


Princeton. Perhaps because of 
this experience, along with the 
divisiveness caused on some 
campuses by the rivalries be- 
tween fraternities and indepen- 
dents, and the democratic tenor 
of the times, Lovett outlawed so- 
cial fraternities and sororities at 
Rice. The big national organiza- 
tions would never come; instead, 
the students formed organiza- 
tions of their own. The first were 
the Young Men's Christian Asso- 
ciation and the Young Women's 
Christian Association, followed 
by the Menorah Society for Jew- 
ish students. To challenge the 
mind, the students established 
three "literary societies," the 
Owl Literary Society and the 
Riceonian Literary and Debating 
Society for men, and the Eliza- 
beth Baldwin Literary Society — 
named for the founder's second 
wife — for women. In the begin- 
ning, these were true debating 
and literary societies, holding in- 
tersociety contests, reviewing 
books, and reading essays. Eliza- 
beth Kalb, class of 1916, won the 
state oratorical contest in 1915- 

While the men's literary so- 
cieties did not survive long, the 
women's did, and the EBLS split 
in 1919 to form another "lit," as 
these organizations came to be 
known: the Pallas Athene Liter- 
ary Society (PALS). In 1924 an- 
other group of women formed the 
OWLS, the Owen Wister Literary 
Society — named for the popular 
author of The Virginian. Until 
1 9 1 5 — 1 6 any woman who wanted 
to join the EBLS could do so, on 
her own initiative. New member- 
ship was closed to seniors that 
year, on the grounds that if a 

# ^«^ 


37. The Owl Literary Society, 1916. 

38. Tlie Elizabeth Baldwin Literary Society, 1916. 


The Ft)rmative Years 

* ^A« t 

39. The Rice Institute Ln'^uiccnng Society, 1916. 

; i 

40. The Women's Tennis Chib. 1916. 

woman had heen at Riee and had 
not participated in the society be- 
fore her senior year, she must not 
be genuinely interested.' Before 
long, the organizations began to 
invite women to join during their 
freshman year and became more 
sorority-like. What had begun as 
a literary group would end as an 
almost totally social organization. 

By 191 6 there were a number 
of clubs and organizations on 
campus, some academic, some 
social. Rice engineering students 
had formed the Engineering So- 
ciety in 1914, and the architects 
and biologists soon organized 
groups in their own disciplines. 
German students founded the 
Goethe Verein, and French stu- 
dents formed Les Hiboux. For 
women there were the Choral 
Club and the Tennis Club. An 
early addition to the Rice scene 
was the Rice Band, twenty-one 
members strong in 19 16. On lan- 
uary 15, 19 16, the Thresher be- 
gan publication as the official 
student newspaper. Established 
through the literary societies, the 
paper secured enough support 
from students and city merchants 
to be published biweekly. Wil- 
liam M. Standish was the first 
editor-in-chief and James R Mark- 
ham the first business manager. 
In 191 6 the first graduating class 
published the first yearbook, 
edited by Ervin F. Kalb, with 
Hildegarde Elizabeth Kalb as as- 
sistant editor and William Max 
Nathan as business manager. The 
seniors chose the name Cam- 
panile for the yearbook, from the 
landmark campanile/smokestack 
of the Mechanical Laboratory." 

Although Dr. Lovett wanted 

The Formative Years 


the residential halls to become 
individual social units similar to 
Oxford's colleges (without taking 
over the university's academic 
role), the Institute's dormitories 
did not develop an organization 
beyond the Hall Committee. The 
only associations unique to one 
hall or another were some intra- 
mural sports teams, but these 
were plebeian compared with 
Lovett's noble vision of college 
debating or musical organiza- 
tions. Instead, the student body 
split horizontally by classes. The 
classes received the loyalty and 
energy that Lovett had hoped to 
see in the separate halls; and 
with the arrival of the class of 
1917 in 191 3, a tradition began 
that later brought turmoil. The 
newly turned sophomores found 
it great fun to haze freshmen. 
Hazing consisted of pranks 
played on male freshmen or 
"slimes." The term "slime" had 
several possible origins. Some 
have suggested that it was a syn- 
onym for "fish," by which sobri- 
quet the Texas A&M Aggies 
called their freshmen. Others say 
that freshmen were thought just 
to have emerged from the primor- 
dial ooze on the way to being civ- 
ilized. Whatever its derivation, 
the name "slime" stuck. Soph- 
omores greeted freshmen as they 
emerged from registration and 
subjected them to a number of 
indignities, such as having their 
faces painted, pushing a mothball 
in a race across the gravel walks, 
and other similar foolishness. 
Freshmen had to run errands 
for sophomores and clean their 
rooms. In the practice known as 
"running the gauntlet," a fresh- 

man ran through a lane formed 
by sophomores, each of whom 
had a leather strap or broom 
handle with which he gave the 
slime a swat. This trick resulted 
in a broken collar bone on one 
occasion, but the sophomores 
paid the medical bills. The 
administration did not take 
any action to curb hazing until 
after World War I. There was no 
hazing of women students m the 

Athletic activities were just as 
much a part of the college scene 
as were classes, examinations, 
and social clubs, and the Insti- 
tute's students were quick to go 
out for various teams. Rice ath- 
letics had started in 19 12 with 
the first class under the direction 
of Philip H. Arbuckle, who 
taught English and occasionally a 
history course m addition to his 
coaching duties. During the first 
season Rice played football 
games against Houston and Or- 
ange high schools, Sam Houston 
Normal Institute, Southwestern 
University, and Austin College. 
The team finished the season 
with three victories and two de- 
feats. In the process it acquired 
the name "the Owls." A sugges- 
tion in the Houston Post that the 
name be "the Grays" for one of 
the school colors did not bear 
fruit, and the team was named 
instead for the bird on the Insti- 
tute seal. 

In that first season the Rice 
football team held its own against 
the high schools and Sam Hous- 
ton but lost badly to the bigger 
schools. The next year Rice had 
its revenge against Southwestern 
and finished the season of four 

games undefeated. In 19 14 the 
Owls began playing a full sched- 
ule in football as an original 
member of the newly organized 
Southwest Conference,-' and the 
University of Texas and Texas 
Ai&M quickly became primary 
rivals. Rice beat the Aggies in 
191 5 and 1916, but it was 19 16 
before the Owls managed even to 
score against Texas, and then the 
final score was 16-2. That same 
year the Owls also ran up the 
highest score in their history: 
they beat brand-new Southern 
Methodist University 146-3.'^ 

As a symbol for the team, stu- 
dents constructed a large canvas 
owl, which they carried to the 
games. It was a tempting target 
for those irrepressible mascot 
rustlers, the Aggies, who kid- 
napped it in 1917 and took it 
home to College Station. Rice 
students sent a private detective 
to find out the owl's location. 
When he sent a telegram saying, 
"Sammy is fairly well and would 
like to see his parents at eleven 
o'clock," the Rice mascot had a 
name. Students organized the 
Owl Protective Society to rescue 
Sammy and set off for College 
Station, breaking into the AiSvM 
Armory and starting back for 
Houston with the bird as quickly 
as they could. Their deed did not 
go undiscovered, however, and 
practically the whole Aggie Ca- 
det Corps rose in pursuit. The 
Rice students had only a couple 
of cars for transportation; the Ag- 
gies got a train, caught up with 
the Rice men, and captured all 
except four. Those four managed 
to cut up Sammy's canvas cover- 
ing and smuggle the skin back to 


The Formative Years 

41. Football team, 1912. Back row, left to right; Oliver R. Garnett. (Louis J. Smith, R. Wyllys Taylor. William M. 
Standish, Wesley G. Mims, foe Brigham. George Journeay. Philip H. Arbuckle (coach): middle row: George K. 
Wilkinson, George I. Goodwin. Robert E. Cummings (captain). Clinton H. Wooten. Wilson T. Betts-. from row: Rex 
Graham Aten, Louis L. Farr. 

The Formative Years 


42. Football team, 1913. 


The Formative Years 

43- Sammy. 

Houston. Sammy was home once 
again, but that was not to be his 
last run-in with the Aggies. 

Other sports also began early in 
the history of the Institute. In the 
spring of 191 3 the first baseball 
team played a variety of oppo- 
nents from local high schools, 
the Southern Pacific Railroad, 
and Houston National Bank. In 
1914 Rice men participated in a 
track meet. Basketball began in 
lyis, and the Owls won the con- 
ference in 1918.'' 

Further Faculty 

As the student body grew in 
numbers, so did the faculty. The 
second year, 1913-14, Percy 

44. Baseball team. 191^. Back row, left to right: Harry M. Bulbrook. Louis L. 
Farr. Elmer E. Sbutts (manager). William M. Standish, Philip H. Arbuckle 
(coach), Clinton H. Wooten, Gordon S. Mayo: middle row: /. B. Spiller, 
Robert E. Cummings, Oliver R. Garnett (captain), (Brantly C. >) Harris. 
Wilson Betts; front row: Harry Lee Hailess. George I. Goodwin. 

45. Early track team, probably 1916 or 1917. 

The Formative Years 


Darnell and Julian Huxley arrived 
to assume their positions as as- 
sistant professors. Professor Wil- 
son had been helpmg President 
Lovett find good faculty members 
in several fields, emphasizing 
that "unless we get some really 
first rate men, the Institute will 
get a poor reputation which will 
take years to live down." He sug- 
gested to Lovett that advertising 
positions at better salaries than 
were paid elsewhere (or at least 
equivalent ones) was an efficient 
method of establishing the Insti- 
tute's reputation. Wilson also 
lobbied hard for a second physi- 
cist, and Lovett hired one that 
year. The new assistant profes- 
sor was another scholar recom- 
mended by J. J. Thomson: Arthur 
Llewelyn Hughes.'" 

President Lovett also added 
two full professors to the staff in 
humanities: Albert L. Guerard 
from Stanford to establish the 
French department, and Stockton 
Axson from Princeton to head 
English, which up to this time 
had consisted of McCants, Coach 

47. Percy John Daniell. assistant 
professor of applied mathematics. 

Arbuckle for a term, and Roy P. 
Lingle, an instructor. Axson was 
Woodrow Wilson's brother-in-law 
and was known and loved 
at Princeton as an ideal profes- 
sor. His lectures at Rice soon be- 
came famous, especially those on 
Shakespeare with Axson reciting 
the various parts. Those who saw 
him said that he veritably be- 
came Falstaff. Axson had an un- 
usual arrangement with the Insti- 
tute whereby he remained m the 
Northeast for the first term each 
year but taught the second and 
third terms at Rice.'" 

The 191 3 -14 budget gave 
some indication of the faculty 
situation, and a letter from Pro- 
fessor Wilson to Lovett echoed 
the needs of the Institute. Listed 
in the budget in a special column 
marked "imperative" were the 
fields and ranks that had to be 
filled. Lovett wanted professors 
for chemistry and education, in- 
structors in physics and English, 
and lecturers in history and poli- 
tics. Engineering appears to have 
had special problems. Although 

46. Harold Albert Wilson, professor 
of physics. 

48. fulian Sorell Huxley, assistant 
professor of biology. 

49. Arthur Llewelyn Hughes, 
assistant professor of physics. 

The Formative Years 

50. Stockton Axson. professor of 
English literature. 

engineering was becoming rec- 
ognized as a valid college sub- 
ject, not just a vocational one, 
there were many academics who 
claimed that it was more a trade 
than a profession and as such 
should be taught on the job in- 
stead of in the classroom. What- 
ever Lovett personally may have 
thought about this claim, he had 
a firm grasp of local demands, 
which called for an engineering 
course at the Institute. He said 
later that because of these con- 
siderations, he had to introduce 
engineering courses somewhat 
earlier than he had originally 
planned. Since students who 
wanted to be engineers were ad- 
mitted with the first class, the In- 
stitute would need an engineer- 
ing faculty for the third year. In 
191 3 Wilson indicated the need 
for a good engineer to take charge 
of outfitting the Mechanical Lab- 
oratory, and he forecast failure for 
the engineering course if an engi- 
neer was not hired soon.'" 

51. Albert Leon Guerard. professor of 

For the third year, President 
Lovett was able to make some 
important appointments to the 
faculty but still did not have all 
the professors that he needed. 
Radoslav A. Tsanoff, beloved by 
many generations of Rice stu- 
dents for his idealism and intel- 
lect, came from Clark University 
to be assistant professor of phi- 
losophy. Claude W Heaps, a 
Princeton Phi Beta Kappa with a 
"tremenjous" (his favorite word) 
sense of humor,'' was added to 
the physics department. Clyde C. 
Glascock became assistant pro- 
fessor of modern languages, Rolf 
F. Weber of Berlin was appointed 
to instruct in German, and Wil- 
liam C. Graustein joined the 
mathematicians as an instructor. 
Lovett finally found a historian, 
Robert G. Caldwell, who held a 
Ph.D. from Princeton, and also 
hired two engineers: Herbert K. 
Humphrey, instructor in electri- 
cal engineering, and Joseph H. 
Pound, instructor in mechanical 

52. Radoslav Andrea Tsanoff, 
assistant professor of philosophy. 

engineering. Edwin E. Reinke 
was to join Huxley in biology 
as an instructor; and Joseph 
Ilott Davies, a glassblower and 
research assistant for Huxley, was 
brought from England. (After 
1940, Davies's theatrical Bi- 
ology 100 classes would be 
fondly remembered by many Rice 

During 1915 Lovett hired a 
number of new faculty members, 
among them Hermann J. Muller, 
who would later win a Nobel 
Prize in biology (although not 
at Rice), and cheerful Harry B. 
Weiser, who would do important 
work in colloidal chemistry." 
That same year Samuel G. Mc- 
Cann, noted for his "pink" hair, 
became a fellow in history. (He 
would later become an instructor 
after he received his M.A. in 19 17 
and a year later would become 
registrar as well.) One of Rice's 
most unusual fellows, William J. 
Sidis, also arrived in 191s- A 
child prodigy from Harvard, Sidis 

The Formative Years 


53. Claude William Heaps, 
instructor in physics. 

had to teach students older than 
he was in his mathematics class, 
and the women teased him a 
great deal. He fled back to the 
East in 1916 and in a newspaper 
interview complained of his 
treatment at the hands of Texas 
girls." Lovett continued to add to 
the faculty until World War I dis- 
rupted the university and the 

Life for the new faculty mem- 
bers could be an adventure in its 
own way. Most of the men were 
new to Texas and found the cul- 
tural and climatological shocks 
memorable, although some were 
happy to be away from northern 
winters. The faculty socialized as 
well as studied. Belle Heaps re- 
members that she and her hus- 
band, Claude Heaps, exchanged 
dinner parties with other young 
faculty couples and attended a 
spate of elaborate teas. Mrs. Lov- 
ett was mindful of the advantages 
of good community relations and 
gave elegant receptions for Hous- 

S4. Henry Boyer Weiser. instructor m 

tonians so they could meet fac- 
ulty families. The faculty and 
students got together for parties 
at the bay or for trips down the 
ship channel. Faculty bachelors 
did not neglect their social life, 
either. They dated some of the 
women students, and several 
young professors married women 
out of the first classes. 

Faculty bachelors were invited 
to live on campus in the tower 
above the Commons; Griffith 
Evans was the first inhabitant. 
He occasionally invited students 
to his rooms for conversation and 
coffee — he had the first instant 
coffee some had ever seen — or of- 
fered them his tickets to concerts 
and plays when he could not at- 
tend. Huxley, Hughes, and sev- 
eral graduate students, including 
the shy but courtly Hubert E. 
Bray (who would later become a 
math professor at Rice), soon 
joined Evans in the faculty tower. 

The British contingent often 
congregated behind a curtain in 

55. Samuel Glenn McCarm, 
instructor in history. 

the biology laboratory for four 
o'clock tea, and some of their 
conversations could well have re- 
volved around the differences be- 
tween English and American 
college life. Huxley and Hughes 
wrote Lovett in August 19 14 to 
suggest some improvements in 
the American form. First, the 
food in the Commons was "very 
monotonous and often ill cooked." 
They suggested minimizing the 
use of canned fruits and vegeta- 
bles and serving better quality 
bread and meat. Not long after 
the professorial complaint, some 
students staged a food riot to 
make the point more forcefully. 
Huxley and Hughes's second sug- 
gestion concerned living accom- 
modations. English colleges had 
janitors and special arrangements 
for faculty meals. The two pro- 
fessors found much of their time 
being spent not on research and 
private work but on "petty du- 
ties" that they thought could 
be more quickly and more prop- 


The Formative Years 

erly performed by an attendant. 
Third, they asked for a high table 
for the faculty in the Commons. 
Huxley added a fourth to these 
requests in November when he 
asked for a common room for the 
faculty, a place to get away from 
the students and relax. He under- 
stood America's preoccupation 
with democracy, but he thought 
that the lack of a faculty room 
discrimmated against the faculty. 
He wanted Rice to recognize 
what Oxford and Cambridge al- 
ready understood — that "faculty 
were adults and due some priv- 
ileges which students did not 
merit." Huxley, Hughes, and 
Evans soon moved off campus 
and built a house, nicknamed the 
"Bach," about three-quarters of a 
mile away. Evans invited another 
bachelor to stay, and this house- 
keeping arrangement seemed to 
meet their needs for a while." 

Other Changes 

As student enrollment increased 
and the faculty grew in numbers, 
more buildings were added to the 
campus. The handsome turreted 
Physics Building with its adjoin- 
ing amphitheater was completed 
in 1914, and two more dormitory 
buildings were constructed: East 
Hall in 1914 and West Hall in 

Thanks to the efforts of a man 
who became a Rice institution, 
the grounds also began to look 
like more than prairie. Salvatore 
Martino, or "Tony," as everybody 
called him, had been Captain 
Baker's gardener, and Baker "lent" 
him to Rice in 191 5. Tony never 

returned to the Baker garden. He 
planted trees, the quadrangle 
hedges, cape jasmine, crape myr- 
tle, and vegetables (the last for 
the Commons table), and guarded 
his flowers zealously from casual 
pluckers. Flattery or cajolery did 
aspirants for the blooms no good, 
and anyone whom Tony caught 
in the act of picking even a single 
blossom was ostracized. For his 
student and faculty favorites, 
however, he always produced a 
flower, usually from the cape jas- 
mine bushes. Tony became one 
of the biggest boosters of Rice's 
athletic teams and was famous 
for his bonfire speeches. While 
the content was not always 
expressed in standard English, 
the intent was clear. Tony also 
helped faculty members with 
their own gardens, and some of 
those new to Texas learned that 
the area was fine for growing 
"lee-voka" trees and "hoka-da- 
veeya" vines (live oak trees and 
bougainvillea vinesl." 

Administration and 

In those days Rice had a mini- 
mum of what is today called ad- 
ministration. At the top was the 
board. The trustees did not inter- 
fere with President Lovett's run- 
ning of the school, but they cer- 
tainly knew what was going on. 
They had made Lovett a member 
of the board in 19 10 to fill the 
place vacated by Frederick Rice's 
death in 1901. Their primary job 
was to invest the endowment and 
see that the income^was^ spent 
wisely. For the fiscal year ending 

April 29, 1916, the books showed 
expenditures on the "educational 
department" of almost Si68,ooo 
and revenues in excess of expen- 
ditures of more than $281,000. 
The board listed more than Six. 3 
million in assets, most in first 
mortgage notes and interest- 
bearing securities, bonds, and the 
buildings and grounds of the 

Out at the Institute — the "gen- 
eral offices and financial depart- 
ment" were downtown in the 
Scanlan Building — the admin- 
istration consisted of President 
Lovett and his secretary, John T. 
McCants. McCants was an unof- 
ficial second-in-command, much 
like an executive assistant, who 
handled requests and complaints 
before they got to the president. 
He made both friends and en- 
emies in the process. To many he 
was a likable man; to others, he 
was known as "Mr. McCan-not." 
Mrs. Stratford seems to have had 
no voice in policy-making, al- 
though she had the title "adviser 
to women." The only real secre- 
tary handling correspondence, 
files, and office matters was 
Anne Wheeler, Lovett's secretary, 
who came to Rice in 1919. 

For the departments and fac- 
ulty. President Lovett believed in 
the German type of organization, 
where there was one professor 
per department. That professor 
was, in effect if not in title, the 
chairman or head of the depart- 
ment. The rest consisted of as- 
sistant professors, instructors, 
and lecturers, and possibly some 
teaching fellows. There were no 
associate professors. Occasionally 
in a large and important depart- 

The Formative Years 


ment like mathematics or phys- 
ics there might be two professors, 
but not often. As a result of this 
arrangement, promotions were 
slow in coming. In later years it 
was not unusual for a Rice as- 
sistant professor to be offered a 
chairmanship and a full pro- 
fessorship at another institution, 
circumventing the normal pro- 
gression of assistant professor- 
associate professor-full professor. 
There was no tenure policy at 
Rice, but this did not seem to 
arouse the same feeling of inse- 
curity that it does today. There 
was also no pension or retire- 
ment plan, and sabbaticals were 

It is difficult to determine ex- 
actly when the faculty organized 
into a formal body. Professor Wil- 
son complained at least twice in 
March 19 13 about the lack of 
a definite plan for course work 
and for filling staff needs. Lov- 
ett remarked in 1950 that the 
first committee on curriculum 
and degrees was appointed in 
the spring of 191 3 with Wilson 
as chairman, but no minutes or 
reports of the committee re- 
main. The committee consisted 
of Wilson, Evans, Guerard, Hux- 
ley, and Axsou; if they did any- 
thing, it was only to plan for the 
coming year. There is no evi- 
dence that the faculty met in 
an organized manner to hear 
about the appointment of the 
committee or the committee's 

The small size of the faculty 
leads one to believe that there 
was no formal organization until 
the spring of 19 14. Until then, 
decisions had usually been made 

by one man (professor or presi- 
dent) or one department. Since 
these decisions involved equip- 
ment or faculty, opinions and 
conclusions were easy to gather 
without a formal meeting. By 
March 1914, however, more for- 
mal planning was necessary. The 
sophomores would enter into 
upper-class specialized work in 
the fall, and they needed a co- 
herent course of study. Policy on 
such matters as admission, atten- 
dance, probation, and promotion 
had to be promulgated as well. 
The earliest minutes existing for 
the faculty sitting as a formal 
body are dated March 27, 19 14. 

In May 19 14 another commit- 
tee was appointed to draw up a 
tentative plan of studies for the 
next and succeeding years. It con- 
sisted of the same members as 
the 19 1 3 committee, and they 
filed their report in June. Their 
recommendations were the basis 
for programs leading to the Bach- 
elor of Arts degree and fifth-year 
engineering and architecture de- 
grees. They also reiterated Lov- 
ett's goal that the Institute be a 
university. Although the program 
was concentrated in the sciences, 
advanced courses would be avail- 
able in the "so-called humanities 
... to offer both the advantages 
of a liberal general education and 
those of special and professional 
training." In addition to bach- 
elor's degrees. Rice would offer 
graduate degrees, although the 
committee had not yet spelled 
out the requirements for these. 
Furthermore, the work would be 
at "a high university standard." 
(The committee report said 
"moderately-high," but in the 

completed catalog the word 
"moderately" was omitted.)'" 

The plan divided the Bachelor 
of Arts curriculum into a general 
course and an honors course. The 
general course did not involve 
highly detailed, specialized study, 
as did the honors course, but ei- 
ther could be the path to graduate 
study. The first two years' work 
were the same for both curricula, 
covering five courses each year. 
In the freshman year each stu- 
dent took mathematics, English, 
a modern language, a science, 
and an elective; in the soph- 
omore year, mathematics or a sci- 
ence, English, a language, and 
two electives. At that point, stu- 
dents had to decide whether to 
take the general or the honors 
course; they also had more lati- 
tude in choice of subjects than in 
the first two years. For the gen- 
eral course, subjects were divided 
into Group A (the humanities) 
and Group B (the sciences, engi- 
neering, and mathematics). In the 
junior year, students took four 
subjects: two that had been taken 
in the second year, one that had 
been taken in both freshman and 
sophomore years, and an elec- 
tive. At least one subject had to 
be from Group A and one from 
Group B. The senior year pro- 
vided for four subjects: two 
continuing from the third year, 
one from either the second and 
third years or the first and third 
years, and an elective. Again, 
one subject from each group was 

Honors students, on the other 
hand, were considered to be en- 
tering rigorous professional train- 
ing; they concentrated in one 


The Formative Years 

subject area with no requirement 
to take a course from the other 
group. Juniors took five subjects, 
seniors four (later five), all of 
which could be in their chosen 
disciplines or closely related 
ones. Each program was devised 
by the department concerned, 
but not all departments offered 
honors courses. At first these 
were available only in pure and 
applied mathematics, theoretical 
and experimental physics, mod- 
ern languages and literatures, bi- 
ology, and chemistry. Others 
were slowly added to the list over 
the next thirty years. 

The general B.A. student who 
performed at a very high level 
was honored by the designation 
"with distinction" at commence- 
ment, and the successful honors 
student graduated "with honors 
in" his or her special field. (Only 
with the graduating class of 1959 
did the common academic dis- 
tinctions "cum laude," "magna 
cum laude," and "summa cum 
laude" appear on Rice sheepskins.) 

B.A. students in either cur- 
riculum were allowed a certain 
amount of flexibility in their 
courses of study. Engineering stu- 
dents had none at all, except 
sometimes to pick their foreign 
languages. Engineers took five 
subjects each year and in some 
cases more in their fourth and 
fifth years. To meet the require- 
ments of the engineering pro- 
fession and become a "well- 
rounded" graduate, students who 
could "afford the time" were en- 
couraged to spend three or four 
years on preliminary work, take 
the B.A. at the end of four years, 
and receive an engineering degree 

at the end of six or seven years. 
It appears, however, that few 
followed the recommendation. 
Most elected to stay for five years, 
receiving a B.S. after the fourth 
year and an engineering degree 
after the fifth. Degrees were of- 
fered in mechanical, civil, electri- 
cal, and chemical engineering. 
Architects were in a similar cate- 
gory, but they were allowed more 
electives. At the same time, they 
were obliged to study the "indis- 
pensable elements of a liberal ed- 
ucation" as well as the engineer- 
ing and technical subjects that 
were becoming mandatory for a 
practicing architect.'" 

All courses offered at Rice ran 
for a full year. Remedying a fail- 
ure in a course meant taking it 
over the next year. Exceptions to 
this rule were a few courses in 
engineering and philosophy of- 
fered as term courses and later as 
semester courses when the two- 
semester year replaced the three- 
term year. 

It appears from the faculty 
minutes that these curricula 
were adopted without much con- 
troversy, perhaps because the 
courses of study were similar to 
other schools'. There had been 
many experiments in higher edu- 
cation in the first decade of the 
century, and Rice was able to 
take advantage of the experience 
of others. The Institute was prob- 
ably more fortunate in its curric- 
ulum development than anyone 
realized at the time. Rice was a 
school without tradition and had 
a new faculty drawn from many 
places. There was no entrenched 
course of study with adherents 
unwilling to give up their "em- 

pires," no opposition on the basis 
of habit, no large constituency of 
alumni, no meddling trustees to 
satisfy. At the same time, it could 
tolerate both a course of study for 
the engineer and one for the hu- 
manist, and strive to maintain in- 
tellectual quality, discipline, and 
community interest in each." 

There were still curricular 
matters to be worked out and 
some regulations to be de- 
fined after the original plan was 
adopted. In December 19 14 the 
faculty regularized the grading 
system. Students were to be di- 
vided into five categories, but in- 
stead of As and Bs, Rice students 
received numerical grades: I sig- 
nified very high standing, II high 
standing. III medium standing, 
IV low standing, and V failure. 
There were no percentages at- 
tached formally to these num- 
bers, such as 85 equals a II. In 
May 191 5 the faculty decided on 
regulations for graduation, pro- 
motion, probation, and with- 
drawal. Students needed to pass 
at least half their course work to 
remain at the Institute. To gradu- 
ate, they needed passing grades in 
eighteen courses, of which eight 
had to be grades of III or better. In 
19 17 the faculty spelled out ex- 
actly what kinds of courses those 
eighteen had to be: five freshman 
courses (courses listed in the 
loos in the catalog), five at the 
sophomore level (200s), four at 
the junior level (300s), and four 
senior courses (400s). (Graduate 
courses were numbered 500 and 
above.) The faculty was inter- 
ested in continuity of learning, 
and they emphasized that each 
year's learning was intended to 

The Formative Years 


build on the previous one. In his 
book, Memories, Juhan Huxley 
recalled the difficulty of convinc- 
ing students that his two-year ad- 
vanced course was a unity. "They 
clung to the idea that all they 
had to do was to pass their exams 
at the end of each semester, and 
if I asked any questions concern- 
ing earlier work, would protest: 
'But, Prof, we've done all that.'" 
He persisted and thought he had 
some success in establishing bi- 
ology as a unitary study, "not to 
be chopped into unrelated 
chunks of knowledge. "^- 

The first two years passed with 
few regulations. By 191 5, how- 
ever, enrollment had passed 200, 
and some rules became neces- 
sary. Up to that time there had 
been no penalty for absenteeism 
or tardiness beyond a caustic re- 
mark from the instructor. In Jan- 
uary 191 5, the faculty approved a 
new system of mandatory class 
attendance. The professors were 
determined that students should 
attend classes "with absolute reg- 
ularity." They also expressed 
their displeasure with a system 
that allowed a definite number of 
cuts, for students then always 
took the full number allowed. 
Therefore, no cuts were to be per- 
mitted, and any student who 
missed class had to bring a writ- 
ten excuse from parents, physi- 
cian, or adviser accounting for 
the absence — and in addition pay 
twenty-five cents for clerical ex- 
penses to process the file. At the 
same meeting the faculty voted 
to require thirteen freshmen and 
one sophomore to leave school 
because of excessive absences. 
With a small student body, the 

faculty could and did consider 
each student's problem individu- 
ally and vote a solution. At the 
same time, faculty members 
were not insensitive to the confu- 
sion and needs of the students. 
An adviser system was estab- 
lished in 1914 so that faculty 
members could assist students 
with personal problems and coun- 
sel them in choosing courses.*' 

Admission requirements also 
worried the faculty. In the spring 
of 19 16 they recorded several dis- 
cussions and reports on entrance 
examinations. Tests took seven 
or eight days to administer, and 
the faculty wanted to shorten the 
exams without lowering stan- 
dards. These were Rice-originated 
tests, not the tests of the College 
Entrance Examination Board. It 
was not until 1919 that the Insti- 
tute accepted CEEB scores for en- 
trance purposes, and even then 
the test was only for students 
who had not attended accredited 
high schools. 

In 19 17, for the first but by no 
means the last time, the faculty 
discussed the problem of enroll- 
ing well-prepared freshmen. They 
considered several alternatives: 
limiting the number of students, 
raising the number of units re- 
quired, prescribing certain sub- 
jects as prerequisites for admis- 
sion, and admitting from only the 
upper two-thirds of a high school 
class. One possibility that they 
raised was to select only appli- 
cants with certified high school 
records and to require examina- 
tions for all. None of these proce- 
dures seemed acceptable at the 
time, especially since some of the 
requirements would exclude good 

graduates from the state's very 
small schools, which did not of- 
fer the city schools' variety of 

Except for very general state- 
ments permitting a master's de- 
gree (after one year's graduate 
work and a thesis in a principal 
subject) or a doctorate (after three 
years' work, a dissertation, and a 
public examination), the faculty 
did not concern itself with gradu- 
ate requirements until October 
1916, after Walter W. Marshall 
had obtained the first Master of 
Arts degree at the Institute's first 
commencement the previous 
June. In November the master's 
requirements were set. The grad- 
uate student would have to take 
and pass four advanced courses 
with high credit, at least two of 
which had to be at the 400 level 
or above and one at the 500 level. 
The course work included re- 
search in the student's principal 
subject, and the student had to 
submit a thesis and pass a public 
oral examination. The Ph.D. re- 
quirements did not state a spe- 
cific number of courses but did 
call for a "distinctly original con- 
tribution to the subject" in the 
thesis and for its publication m 
an accredited journal or series. 
The last requirement had evi- 
dently been discussed since at 
least 1914, because in that year 
Professor Blayney complained 
about the problems faced by can- 
didates for literary or philosophi- 
cal doctorates in publishing their 
long theses in journals. Blayney 
also pointed out that if this provi- 
sion were adopted, the judges of 
the student's work would not be 
the specialists of the Institute 


The Formative Years 

hut the journal editors, who had 
their own interests. He beheved 
that the sugestion was unsound 
in theory and would prove even 
worse in practice. Nevertheless, 
the requirement was adopted and 
contmued until 1950."' Since the 
Ph.D. degrees earned at Rice un- 
til 1955 were all in mathematics 
and science (with the lone excep- 
tion of a Ph.D. in history awarded 
to Albert Grant Mallison in 1933), 
the publication requirement does 
not appear to have been a hard- 
ship for graduate students in the 
early years. 

Although the president issued 
a list of dates for faculty meet- 
ings each year, it appears that 
after 19 16 the faculty met only 
when a problem arose or new reg- 
ulations or course requirements 
were needed. To take care of rou- 
tine matters, Lovett appointed a 
small number of committees. By 
1916 the committees and their 
chairmen were Examinations and 
Standing, Caldwell; Course of 
Study and Schedules, Wilson; En- 
trance Examinations, Darnell; Li- 
brary, Evans; Outdoor Sports, 
Watkin; Non-Athletic Organiza- 
tions, Axson; Recommendations, 
Graustein; and Student Advisors, 

The committees brought their 
reports to the full faculty for dis- 
cussion and adoption, but not 
every committee recommenda- 
tion was accepted. For example, 
Wilson's 1914 committee on the 
curriculum had suggested that 
the six-day school week (there 
were Saturday morning classes) 
be divided so that classes met 
not every other day but on three 
consecutive days, each day con- 

sisting of four periods in the 
morning beginning at 8:30, with 
labs in the afternoon. This may 
have pleased the scientists, but at 
least one humanist objected. Ger- 
man professor Blayney protested 
against crowding work in literary 
subjects into three days followed 
by four without instruction. Such 
a schedule would also allow stu- 
dents "too much" leisure time at 
the beginning or end of the week, 
if they could arrange their sched- 
ules carefully. The committee's 
suggestion was not adopted. ^~ 

The First Library 

One of the pivotal components of 
any institution of higher learning 
is its library. No matter what 
their disciplines, scholars need 
a collection of sources and in- 
formation about their fields. 
The charter of the Rice Institute 
called specifically for a free pub- 
lic library and readmg room, but 
that was not easy to establish. 
Lovett wrote to his friend T. |. I. 
See, a noted astronomer at the 
Naval Observatory, that he was 

56. Alice Crowell Dean '16. assistant libraiian. and Sara Stratford, adviser to 

The Formative Years 


working on a plan whereby the 
Houston Public Library would 
confine itself to "things literary 
and popular" and leave the Insti- 
tute's library fund free to pur- 
chase scientific and technical 
publications/" Nothing appears 
to have been done to develop a 
library until the school had been 
in operation for a while. In 191 5 
Lovett appointed a faculty Li- 
brary Committee with Griffith 
Evans as chairman. Evans, how- 
ever, did not run the library 
alone. Whenever the library is 
mentioned, the first person who 
comes to mind is Alice Crowell 

Miss Dean had been superin- 
tendent of high schools in Vic- 
toria, Texas, but she did not have 
a college degree; she came to 
Rice in 191 3 to finish her work. 
She graduated in 191 6 with hon- 
ors in mathematics and remained 
to work on a master's degree. She 
also stayed to help build the li- 
brary. As an undergraduate, she 
wanted to contribute to her sup- 
port by working; possibly because 
she was a little older than most 
of the undergraduate and gradu- 
ate students, the school hired her 
to manage the library under the 
committee's direction. She also 
taught a section of Math 100 for 
years and was listed in the bud- 
gets as a fellow in mathematics. 
One of her students was Howard 
Hughes, the multimillionaire en- 
trepreneur. When asked why she 
had given him a failing grade, she 
replied, "He flunked himself by 
frittering away his time." Miss 
Dean was not one to fritter. 

Named acting librarian in 
19 14, Alice Dean never obtained 

a library degree. Her training in 
the field consisted of one sum- 
mer at Columbia University and 
one day at Harvard; nonetheless, 
she proved to be an excellent li- 
brarian. She and Evans used the 
new faculty's specialized knowl- 
edge to build a working library 
where books were bought be- 
cause there was a need for them, 
not just to add to the collection. 
High on the list of priorities were 
scientific, literary, and technical 
journals. The Institute purchased 
journals and other publications 
in series, including their com- 
plete back files, on the theory 
that there was no school or in- 
stitution in the area with a large 
collection of back issues of peri- 
odicals. Miss Dean also put the 
library on the Library of Congress 
cataloging system, an action that 
saved a great deal of expense later 
when the Dewey Decimal sys- 
tem lost favor.^^ 

The size of the library de- 
pended, of course, on the bud- 
get. In 1913-14 and 1914-15, 
$10,000 was allotted each year 
for books. By 1 9 1 5 - 1 6, Evans 
and Miss Dean had established a 
system of units to allocate the 
money among the various depart- 
ments. The science, engineering, 
and architecture departments got 
ten units each, some of the hu- 
manities were allotted six, and 
fine arts, Spanish, education, and 
Latin and Greek got four each, 
with an extra eight units left over 
for special purchases. Any new 
course received an extra credit, as 
did new members of the faculty. 
That year the amount in the bud- 
get was raised to $16,000 and the 
next to $18,000. The war years 

brought substantial reductions, 
but by 1920 the library allotment 
was up to $1 5,000 again. ^" 

The physical size of the library 
determined its location. In the 
beginning it was housed on the 
second floor of the Administra- 
tion Building, in what is today 
the president's office. As the col- 
lection grew, it spread into rooms 
on the first floor, then took over 
the basement, and finally colo- 
nized branches in other buildings 
as well. As might be expected, 
problems arose from using the 
basement of the Administration 
Building. During heavy rains the 
basement flooded so badly that 
the bottom shelf was unusable. 
Librarian Sarah Lane remembered 
going down one day to check on 
the state of the current flood only 
to find a large snake swimming 
in the waters. She left the base- 
ment library to the snake that 

Public Lectures 

In addition to class lectures, labo- 
ratories, research, and committee 
work, the faculty had another 
task: lecturing to the public. In 
an attempt to foster harmonious 
ties with the city, Lovett estab- 
lished in 191 3 what were called 
the University Extension Lec- 
tures, realizing his inaugural as- 
piration "to support the intellec- 
tual and spiritual welfare of the 
community."'"" They had a two- 
fold purpose: to expose the peo- 
ple of the community (especially 
the "several hundred college men 
and women") to Rice's scholars 
and vice versa, and to extend the 


The Formative Years 

57. The first library, in the Administrcition Building. 

influence of the university's aca- 
demic hfe beyond the Institute's 
walls. Given free of charge, the 
lectures were delivered three 
afternoons a week in series of 
thirty-six. They were drawn from 
all aspects of work at Rice. While 
they were as nontechnical and 
popular in treatment as their sub- 
jects permitted, some of the lec- 
ture series amounted to short 
university courses. Stockton Ax- 
son gave the first addresses and 
proved to be one of the most pop- 
ular speakers. In the first five 
years, he presented sixty talks, 
half again as many as the next 
most prolific speaker. Professor 
Guerard. ' For some of Axson's 
lectures, and for some of the oth- 
ers by faculty and guest speakers, 
it was necessary to move to the 
City Auditorium to accommo- 
date all who wished to attend. 
For the most part, however, the 

lectures were held in the physics 
amphitheater on campus.'' 

The extension lectures re- 
ceived wide publicity, many 
being abstracted in newspapers 
throughout the state. To publi- 
cize the extension lectures and 
other talks by faculty and visi- 
tors, Lovett established the Rice 
Institute Pamphlet, a quarterly 
serial (known as Rice University 
Studies since i960). The Pamph- 
let began in 191 5 by publishing 
the inaugural lectures and soon 
included extension lectures, 
commencement addresses, and 
scholarly papers. ~' 

Early Achievements and 

Rice held its first commence- 
ment in lune 1916. The fes- 
tivities lasted several days and 

included dances, a play, a tennis 
tournament, and a garden party 
given by the Lovetts in honor of 
the graduates. The baccalaureate 
and commencement ceremonies 
were held out of doors, on the 
west or court side of the Admin- 
istration Building to take advan- 
tage of the morning cool and the 
building's shade. The Reverend 
Dr. Peter Gray Sears of Christ 
Church Cathedral, Houston, 
preached the baccalaureate ser- 
mon, and Dr. David Starr lordan, 
chancellor of Stanford University, 
addressed the commencement 
audience on the subject "Is War 
Eternal?" The proud graduates re- 
ceived diplomas that were unlike 
any others. Designed by Dr. Lov- 
ett and presented by him along 
with a firm handshake, the Rice 
diploma was, and is still, a large 
sheepskin with the seal of the 
school at the top and the words 
positioned in such a way that the 
margins form the outline of a 
Grecian urn. Of the original sev- 
enty-seven matriculants, twenty- 
seven remained to graduate in 
1 9 16. The class of 191 6 num- 
bered thirty-five — twenty men 
and fifteen women, including 
eight students who had entered 
after 1912. Of the thirty-five, 
twenty-seven received Bachelor 
of Arts degrees and eight Bach- 
elor of Science degrees (signify- 
ing that they were engineers or 
architects. !~^ 

President Lovett was some- 
what disappointed that he had no 
real prizes for scholarship to give 
at that first commencement, but 
he could be proud of the Institute 
and Its graduates. In 1915 Rice 
had qualified for admission to the 

The Formative Years 


58. The academic procession at the first commencement, 1916. 

Southern Association of Colleges 
and Secondary Schools and was 
certified as a Class A college by 
the Texas Department of Educa- 
tion. Lovett did have his critics, 
who complained that Rice was 
not democratic enough in its fac- 
ulty, that the "dominant part" of 
the faculty was made up of for- 
eigners, that Lovett and the trust- 
ees had wasted money on fancy 
buildings instead of purchasing 
good equipment, and that the 
president was developing in the 
students "a snobbish intellectual 
aristocracy/"' But there were also 

those like Albert Guerard who 
understood what Lovett was try- 
ing to make of the Rice Institute. 
Guerard thought that Rice had a 
"special mission." Texas already 
had a large, many-sided state uni- 
versity and a number of small 
colleges. In 1918 he wrote Lov- 

What Rice, with its splendid 
plant, and its complete indepen- 
dence should stand for, is not 
numbers, nor is it purely local 
service. Our part should be to es- 
tablish a standard. Let us have 

few buildings, few departments, 
few professors, few students, but 
each the best that can be se- 
cured. It would be false democ- 
racy to attempt to provide an all- 
round course for all comers, 
without limitations. We cannot 
do that on our present endow- 
ment without a decided lowering 
of our ideals. If we were alone in 
the field, it would be our obvious 
duty to accept conditions as we 
find them, and work up slowly to 
the desired standard. But the 
South can afford to have one at 
least of its numerous institutions 


The Formative Years 

59. The conferring of degrees at the first commencement. 

of learning kept on the highest 
possible level, irrespective of 
numbers and cost, as an example 
to the rest. I would rather see 
300 picked students at Rice than 
a thousand indifferent ones. If 
the Trustees should boldly an- 
nounce a policy of strict limita- 
tion of numbers, there would be 
an outcry, no doubt, but in a few 
years, the result would justify 
the new departure and your op- 
ponents themselves would be 
proud of what Rice had become 

in the life of the City and the 

Lovctt could hardly have said it 

Criticism or praise aside, the 
Institute had some problems. 
The faculty was understaffed, and 
if the student body kept growing 
as it had been — the number in 
1 9 16 was about six hundred — the 
physical plant would soon be 
overcrowded and need enlargmg. 
Furthermore, the library was 

woefully in need of books and 
other resources in the humani- 
ties. How much money the board 
could mvest in these improve- 
ments and expansions was an un- 
answerable question at that time. 
There was also no end to little 
vexing problems. One of the 
most troublesome to President 
Lovett must have been convinc- 
ing others of his vision for the 
Institute: that it be a real univer- 
sity. A friend of Lovett 's, Hopson 
O. Murfee, twitted the president 

The Formative Years 

in 1909 and suggested that Lovett 
change the letterhead, which 
read "The Rice Institute," either 
to omit "The" or to insert "Only" 
after it. In 19 16, physics professor 
Hughes wrote Lovett that one of 
the new Rice graduates, Norman 
Hurd Ricker, was having diffi- 
culty being accepted by Prmce- 
ton's graduate school. The quar- 
rel was not with Ricker, an honors 
physics student, but with the 
Rice courses. Dean David Magie 
of Princeton had told Hughes 
that Princeton regarded the Insti- 
tute as a technical institution 
and not of university standing. 
Furthermore, he said, its courses 
were not sufficiently broad and 
liberal to serve as a foundation 
for graduate work there. Prince- 
ton dean Andrew F. West had in- 
formed Hughes that he thought a 
science student at Rice concen- 
trated entirely on science. In re- 
buttal, Hughes pointed out that a 
B.A. course at Rice required two 
years of English, two years of a 
modern language, and other hu- 
manities courses; still. West was 
not impressed. To him, English 

and modern languages (even two 
years of each) did not equal the 
cultural value of Latin (only one 
year of which was required at 
Princeton), and he was not even 
sure that they should be consid- 
ered as part of a university educa- 
tion. Rice could do nothing in 
the face of this sort of opposition 
but wait until Princeton, Yale, 
and other institutions like them 
should drop Latin from their 
graduate entrance requirements. 
Ricker stayed at the Institute for 
both his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees 
and went on to make a name for 
himself as a physicist; Prince- 
ton's loss was Rice's gain.'' 

The difficulty over what Rice 
actually was — institute, college, 
or university — lingered, however. 
The title pages of the Pamphlet 
and the catalog, as well as formal 
announcements of lectures and 
other matter sent out by the In- 
stitute, proclaimed it to be "The 
Rice Institute, A University of 
Liberal and Technical Learning 
Founded m the City of Houston 
Texas by William Marsh Rice 
and Dedicated by Him to the Ad- 

vancement of Letters, Science 
and Art." When asked in 1926 
why "The Rice Institute" was not 
sufficient, Lovett replied that the 
combination was a compromise. 
"We might have said once for all 
'Rice University'. Standing alone, 
'The Rice Institute' fails, on the 
one hand of giving the founder 
explicitly and fully such recogni- 
tion as apparently was desired, 
and, on the other, to record with 
sufficient completeness what his 
trustees set out to do in their 
own generation." There were still 
connotations of an institute of 
technology or of an eleemosynary 
institution, and this particular 
problem would not go away until 
the name was changed.'" 

Beside the problem of the 
Great War in Europe, however, all 
smaller difficulties paled. The 
United States and Rice had man- 
aged, for the most part, to stay 
out of the momentous events 
taking place across the Atlantic; 
but as the nation moved closer to 
war, the university did also. The 
war would bring difficult times to 
the Rice Institute. 


Rice and the Great War 

when World War I broke out in 
Europe in August 19 14, the Rice 
Institute took httle notice of it. 
Juhan Huxley went back to En- 
gland to join the army, and A. L. 
Hughes reported the impossi- 
bility of getting vacuum pumps 
and induction coils from Ger- 
many. The college rhythm, how- 
ever, was maintained: there were 
still lectures, tests, labs, sports, 
dances. When in 19 16 President 
Wilson spoke of the need for 
American preparedness. Rice stu- 
dents formed a voluntary cadet 
corps eighty strong, directed by 
Herbert N. Roe, an instructor of 
physical education. Two com- 
panies organized and began drill- 
ing in March. The corps, called 
"a battalion," continued in the 
fall of 19 16, and by 1917 there 
were one hundred men enrolled.' 

Declaration of war in April 
1 91 7 changed the situation con- 
siderably; the Institute imme- 
diately faced decreases in student 
and faculty numbers as men vol- 
unteered for the army. For those 

faculty members who enlisted, 
the board voted to continue their 
full salaries until they were ac- 
cepted by the army, and then to 
make up any difference between 
their military pay and their Insti- 
tute salaries until the war ended. 
In addition, they would be rein- 
stated in their university posi- 
tions when they were mustered 

Rice students were prime 
candidates for officers' training 
school, and before graduation in 
June 1917 thirty-five of them had 
been admitted to the training 
camp at Camp Funston, Leon 
Springs, north of San Antonio. 
The regular commencement cere- 
mony was held on campus, al- 
though it was somewhat sub- 
dued. For those graduating seniors 
who were already at Leon Springs, 
President Lovett went to the 
camp and conferred their degrees 
in a special ceremony held on the 
drill field.' Altogether, fifty-two 
degrees were awarded. 

Twenty-five members of the 

faculty served with the armed 
forces in some capacity during 
World War I. Lindsey Blayney 
professor of German, participated 
in campaigns in France and Mac- 
edonia and received several cita- 
tions. Mathematics professor 
Griffith Evans worked on high- 
altitude bombing in France, En- 
gland, and Italy. Julian Huxley 
served with military intelligence 
in the British Army and physicist 
Arthur Hughes with the antisub- 
marine division of the British 
Admiralty. Harold A. Wilson 
served on the National Research 
Council's committee investi- 
gating antisubmarine devices and 
worked both at the Naval Experi- 
mental Station in New London, 
Connecticut, and independently 
at the Rice Institute. Woodrow 
Wilson tapped his brother-in-law 
Stockton Axson to be national 
secretary of the American Red 
Cross; Axson served in the United 
States, France, and Italy. Of the 
students who served, eight died 
during the war: Joseph W. Ay- 

The Great War 


# 4V ^ ^ ^ *^ 

55.VW R-iTT-.^ 



60-61. The cadet corps of the Rice Institute. 1916-ij. 60. Company A. 61. Company B. 

cock, Otta L. Cain, Thomas L. 
Coates, Lee Hahom, Roy E. Lil- 
lard, Fred P. Manaker, Charles H. 
Patterson, and Ira South." 

Military Life on Campus 

The students who remained at 
Rice found a different Institute 
when they returned in the fall of 

1917. Pressed by both students 
and staff, the administration had 
applied for and been granted 
a unit of the Reserve Officers' 
Training Corps under terms of 
the National Defense Act of June 
3, 19 16. The War Department as- 
signed Philippine-campaign vet- 
eran Major Joseph Frazier, United 
States Army, Retired, as professor 
of military science and tactics. 

He and the university administra- 
tion "effected a military organiza- 
tion of the students," as the cata- 
log put it. The object seems to 
have been to train the students as 
though they were at a camp such 
as Leon Springs, so that upon 
completion of the course they 
would be eligible to take exam- 
inations to become commis- 
sioned officers. All students. 

The Great War 

hi. Snapshots from infantry life at the Institute. igiJ- 

women ineluded, were required 
to belong to the corps. All men 
were required to take courses in 
the theory and practice of mili- 
tary science and tactics; women 
were to have modified courses 
including physical training, hy- 
giene, and first aid. All had to 
wear uniforms. "It thus appears," 
the 19 17 catalog stated, "that as 
far as may be consistent with the 
university programme of the Rice 
Institute, the conduct of the life 
of the place, including that of the 
campus and the residential halls, 
will be under military regula- 
tions, certainly as long as the war 

What this meant was almost a 
complete reversal of life at Rice 
for men in the residential halls. 
Gone were the "gentlemen's 
club" rules, the freedom to go 
and come at will, the option of 
living in a perpetually chaotic 
dormitory room, and the liberty 
of keeping whatever hours they 
pleased. Instead, the new regi- 
men began with reveille at s:45 
A.M. Cadets were to dress and 
come to assembly. Roll was usu- 
ally called at assembly before 
each meal. At 6: is rooms were 
inspected, and at 6:30 breakfast 
was served. Drill started at 7:30 
and lasted for an hour, after 
which classes ran from 8:30 to 
12:30. Lunch came at 12:4s, and 
labs filled the afternoon until 
4:30. On days without morning 
drill, there was an afternoon drill 
from 4:40 to s:40. After dinner at 
6:00 the cadet was allowed a brief 
time for relaxation, but he had to 
be in his room twenty minutes 
after the meal was over. He was 
then required to stay in his room 

The Great War 


until release from quarters at 
9:30, and a guard was mounted to 
enforce the regulations. Any 
movement outside the rooms be- 
fore release from quarters re- 
quired a permit. Taps sounded at 
11:00, signaling lights out. The 
only really free time was Satur- 
day night, when the cadets could 
go wherever they pleased; but 
they still had to wear uniforms 
and be back at the dorms for taps. 
Students who lived off campus 
had considerably more freedom, 
although they followed the sched- 
ule when they were on campus 
and drilled with the rest, both 
morning and afternoon." 

Four companies, one for each 
residential hall and one for the 
town students, made up the corps. 
The women had their own four 
companies. Officers from major 
down to sergeant were appointed, 
and the students went about try- 
ing to pass as soldiers. This was 
not always easy, especially at 
first, because some had difficulty 
procuring uniforms (they pur- 
chased their own). Soldierly life 
was not without humor, either. 
A maverick company called 
Company BVD or Company B;D 
"formed" for "drill" and even had 
the effrontery to perform at a 
football game using brooms and 
other assorted oddities for weap- 
ons. The male cadets also thought 
it great fun to watch the women 

The women's corps was a spe- 
cial case. The hybrid uniform in- 
cluded a man's hat and an army 
nurse's shoes. There were some 
women like Sarah Lane who had 
to have their uniforms individu- 
ally tailored, because they were 

"HflNO SmUTF! 

63. Snapshots of the BV.D. Co.." 191 


The Great War 




64. The women's cadet corps. 191-'. iPanoiamic photograph by F. j. Schhieter of Houston. I 

too tall for the ready-made ver- 
sions. Women officers wore the 
same braid on their hats as did 
regular officers, causing confu- 
sion and consternation among 
the soldiers from Ellington Field 
and Camp Logan, who felt that 
they had to salute when they met 
the student officers on the streets 
in downtown Houston. Even- 
tually women were allowed to 
wear civilian clothing when not 
on campus for drills. Training for 
the women was not as rigorous as 
the men's: they drilled only three 
times a week instead of five.' 
At the start of the program, 
students were enthusiastic de- 
spite the disruption of their nor- 
mal schedules. The Thresher 
came out foursquare behind the 
military regime and spoke of "the 
glory to the annals of Rice tradi- 
tions" that would follow the 
war. The editors also hoped that 
the good features of the old Rice 
life would be retained. Thev 

wanted to see literary societies 
and other organizations flourish 
and pledged that columns of the 
Thresher would be open to any- 
one wanting to voice an opinion 
on any subject." 

Handled differently, the mili- 
tary system might have been a 
success. As it was, several cir- 
cumstances combined to bring 
the students to vigorous protest. 
Major Frazier was transferred al- 
most as soon as the new school 
year started, leaving behind a set 
of strict military regulations to 
be put into effect. In his place, 
the War Department sent Captain 
Taylor M. Reagan, United States 
Army, Retired. Reagan proved to 
be an unfortunate commandant. 
At his first drill, he marched his 
men through a hedge, causing 
some of the cadets to wonder 
about his capability. To help the 
captain administer the rules, 
Lovett appointed a Military Com- 
mittee under chairman William 

Caspar Graustein, assistant 
professor of mathematics. J. T 
McCants also helped enforce reg- 
ulations in his capacity as book- 
keeper and executive assistant. 

Tape and the Student 

Dissatisfaction with the system 
was evident by December. Men 
in the dormitories did not appre- 
ciate having every minute of 
their days planned by someone 
else. A book of 220 regulations 
set forth actions for every con- 
tingency, and the cadets soon 
learned that every action had to 
have a corresponding permit — or 
so It seemed. Especially irksome 
was incarceration every night 
from around seven to half-past 
nine with no chance to consult 
with classmates about homework 
or leave campus without a per- 
mit. The poor quality of food 
in the mess hall added to their 

The Great War 


discontent." ' (The Commons 
became "the mess hall" as the 
campus adopted military nomen- 
clature for the duration of the 

More serious than those cur- 
tailments to freedom was the stu- 
dents' dissatisfaction with the 
ROTC program itself. Army Gen- 
eral Order No. 49, dated Sep- 
tember 20, 19 16, described the 
phases of the program; nowhere 
did it call for the radical transfor- 
mation of the campus that had 
occurred. The order specified 
military subjects as part of nor- 
mal school work and only three 
hours of drill a week instead of 
the five required by the Institute. 
The cadets claimed to be eager 
for real military training in his- 
tory, tactics, ordnance, signaling, 
entrenchments, and other sub- 
jects an officer needed to know; 
but they were not receiving it. 
Nor did female cadets believe 
that they were receiving correct 

training, certainly not in first 
aid or Red Cross work or in drill. 
Like the men, they chafed at 
the regulations and the verita- 
ble sea of permits required for the 
slightest move. Furthermore, ap- 
peals to the Military Committee 
brought no relief." 

In November the Thresher be- 
gan to print students' statements 
of protest. That brought the edi- 
tor into conflict with the au- 
thorities, who, the editor claimed, 
accused the paper of "directing 
these articles against the good of 
the Institution, of 'agging on' the 
dissatisfaction . . . and even of 
proceeding in an unpatriotic 
manner." According to the editor, 
the real dissatisfaction lay in the 
fact that students could not see 
why they should be deprived of 
their freedom, due them by right 
of American birth and by prece- 
dents in college life. Drill was a 
duty, but the other petty restric- 
tions were not." 

When the Christmas break was 
over, students found that some 
changes had been made in the 
system. Drill would take place 
only in the mornings, three days 
a week. The other three drill 
times would be given over to 
physical training, theory as well 
as practice. Little objection to 
this substitution surfaced, but 
Commandant Reagan also an- 
nounced that instruction in drill 
would have to start at the very 
beginning because the students 
had not received proper training. 
The students blamed Reagan's 
teaching. Roll would be called 
only at reveille, and students 
could miss the other two meals 
on campus if they wished. But 
taps was moved up to 10:30 and 
release from quarters pushed 
back to 10:15, leaving only fif- 
teen minutes free instead of the 
hour and a half the cadets had en- 
joyed before. Guard duty routine 
was also changed slightly. On the 


The Great War 


Ritlc a ctick-hurse to Banbury Cross 
To SCO Bradlt-y manage a cava!r\- horse. 
With K'ne on his fingers and nitrated nose. 
He'll 1-e a Kader wherever he goes. 

65. Cartoon and poem of cavalry life. 1917. 

academic side, two new "war 
courses" were offered: "wireless 
telegraphy," to be taught by engi- 
neer Nicholas Diamant, and "gas 
engines" by A. H. Aagaard." 

Unfortunately, disgruntlement 
had already emerged, more than 
such cosmetic changes could 
mollify. The same day that the 
modifications were published in 
the Thresher, students found at 
their hall doors and at other points 
on campus a publication entitled 
Tape in large red letters. An anon- 
ymous author set forth in vitri- 
olic style the conditions as seen 
by students and a lampoon of the 
authorities in charge. The situa- 
tion had worsened over the holi- 
days, as a number of students had 
either flunked out or gone on 
probation on the basis of Christ- 
mas grades, and a number had 
left to join the army. The paper 
repeated all the causes of discon- 
tent, dwelling especially on the 
punishments meted out for vio- 
lating regulations. "Edgar Ideal," 
"lohnny T McCan-not," and 
"Zeus Graustein" came in for 
particular abuse. The author 
called on students to unite and to 
decline to answer any questions 
about the source of the paper. He 
also asked them to send the pa- 
per home to acquaint their par- 
ents with the situation. - 

The authorities reacted quickly. 
A letter went out from the board 
to parents over J. T McCants's 
signature, claiming that the stu- 
dents had made no formal com- 
plaint of their troubles before 
publishing Tape, and that the 
board had been called in because 
of the students' "rebellious atti- 
tude" and "their apparent deter- 

The Great War 


mination to enforce their own 
demands without consultation 
with anyone and irrespective of 
the opinions of the facuky and 
trustees." It said that miUtary 
regulations were in the students' 
interest and had been adopted 
after careful consideration. The 
students' primary complaint, ac- 
cording to the letter, was confine- 
ment to rooms on weeknights. 
The board was not, however, 
going to take summary action in 
the face of troubles but would 
meet with the students and en- 
deavor to show them the error of 
their ways. Those refusing to 
obey the rules and regulations 
would be expelled. The letter 
said that the faculty and trustees 
believed that parents would en- 
dorse this action, and it asked 
parents to wire their children to 
urge cheerful submission and 
obedience to the rules." 

Tape came out on Saturday, 
January 19. McCants's letter 
went out a few days later. After 
some disturbances in the dor- 
mitories (mostly pranks such as 
turning lights off suddenly in the 
wings, although a few sports 
poked a firehose down the chim- 
ney and flooded Captain Reagan's 
quarters in South Hall), the trust- 
ees intervened in person. On Sat- 
urday, January 26, they met with 
cadet officers and called a student 
meeting for Monday, the twenty- 
eighth. At 10:30 in the morning 
of the twenty-eighth a committee 
from the trustees met with all 
the students in the physics am- 
phitheater. The cadets presenting 
grievances were Cadet Major Al- 
ston Duggan '18, Jay Alexander 
'20, James Markham '18, Pickens 

Coleman '18, and Emmet Niland 
'17. Camille Waggaman '18 and 
Elsbeth Rowe '18 represented the 

As the students saw the situa- 
tion, confinement to rooms was 
not their primary grievance, as 
McCants's letter had alleged. 
They believed that there had 
been a basic impairment of their 
rights that was almost impossible 
to correct because of the au- 
thorities' attitude. Application to 
the administration (Lovett, Mc- 
Cants, and the Military Commit- 
tee) had produced no results; the 
students met only delay, equiv- 
ocation, or outright rejection, 
often without explanation. Since 
attempts by the Thresher to voice 
dissatisfaction resulted in threats 
of censorship or suspension and 
formal complaints were ignored. 
Tape seemed to some the only 
way to be heard. The students 
felt that the charges in McCants's 
letter were misleading or absurd. 
They did not see themselves as 
insurrectionists but as advocates 
for the bettering of the Institute, 
and they asked the trustees for 
just and wise consideration of 
their case. 

After all the student speakers 
had expressed their opinions, 
Captain Baker said that the board 
would remedy conditions as soon 
as possible if they were presented 
with a formal petition and if the 
cadets would pledge to abide by 
the old rules until then. In re- 
sponse, the students adopted res- 
olutions agreeing to stand by the 
rules and disassociating them- 
selves from the authors of Tape 
(but not its charges). They also 
established a committee to draw 

up a formal petition of com- 
plaints for the board."" 

A formal petition addressed to 
the Military Committee was 
ready two days after the meeting. 
The male students asked for abo- 
lition of the requirements they 
disliked the most: call to quar- 
ters, guard duty, taps, roll call at 
every meal, punishment tours 
and confinements, and all rules 
and regulations that would not 
exist at a university maintaining 
only a unit of the ROTC. They 
also wanted the power to start 
a students' organization. The 
women requested consultation 
concerning their uniforms, aboli- 
tion of military drill (with the 
substitution of competent in- 
struction in physical training and 
Red Cross work), availability of 
tennis courts in the cooler hours 
of the day, and reintroduction of 
or support for those social activi- 
ties that had been "hampered or 

On February 9 the trustees 
came to campus again to meet 
with the students. They brought 
with them new regulations ac- 
ceding to many of the students' 
requests. Abolished were the call 
to quarters, guard duty, taps, roll 
call at meals, and women's drill. 
Women would receive Red Cross 
training and physical instruction 
and would have to wear their 
uniforms only on the days on 
which physical exercises were 
scheduled. The trustees approved 
formation of a student associa- 
tion and announced a new set of 
regulations. The students did not 
get everything they wanted; they 
still had to walk tours and suffer 
confinement to their rooms for 


The Great War 

infractions of the rej^uhitions. 

Baker proclaimed the changes 
and new regulations and then 
spoke to the assembled students. 
He agreed with them that "Rice 
is not a military school," and that 
it was hard to convert an aca- 
demic institution into a military 
academy in a few months. But, 
he said, "Rules not properly en- 
forced cause disrespect for mili- 
tary rule." The board would not 
have granted the changes if the 
students' requests had not been 
reasonable or if calm on campus 
had not been restored. The chair- 
man told the students that the 
new rules had to be enforced or 
"things will go back to the old 
conditions." President Lovett also 
responded and closed by extend- 
ing his hand to the students as he 
did at the end of each matricula- 
tion address, saying, "May I not 
ask you to take the hand I extend 
and ask you to help me bridge 
the gulf?" The students thanked 
the board for the changes and 
closed the meeting with a stand- 
ing ovation and the college yell, 
"Yea, Rice!" Then they filed out, 
shaking the president's hand as 
they went." 

In some ways the "rebellion" 
and its causes and results were 
peculiar. From the existing rec- 
ords it is impossible to discover 
exactly who ordered the first set 
of regulations to which the stu- 
dents objected so strongly. Why 
it was thought necessary to 
transform the Institute in such a 
manner is also unknown. Other 
schools established ROTC units 
without such radical changes, 
and General Order No. 49 did not 
call for them. Since the object 


Published in Ihr hope uf cullini; inleresleJ allenlion to evil eunjitium. exislinK at 
Hue. in order that U'isf lud^menl and devoted energy may be muted to bring about 
improvements that are promotive of the welfare of an institution that i.s eapable of 
noble tvork in "the advancement of Letters, Science and Art." 

J A N U .Ji R Y, I 9 1 S 





; undoubted Injui 

: ':.'„,'"r,'i1 


of Kaiiiiii); a 

auJi.n.o w,.h 

.lun.or.. 7 Senior- a„,| 1 ,,.r*,„1 ,t«. 


/'km to'Mp 



omplMc cxi-O 

n.(..l^ B -liKht- 

to(u1 from the nuiveraity offico don doI 
vbi-cK wiih llic tout from tbe oTiee ot 

Tcn.k'r, for th<w t«ro inriitnUoBi m1- 
-i«m clirck M clMoly u thl»- 

Wc koow that the whole school U bo- 

",,;';;,','", /';,;„ 

in Mplainlng 
as thoroughly 



.lffllm-!l from" 
ti.rt> of tho C 

n rvjHirt bonring 
"Bh tJM thero 

BtructoF!.. after firnt InokioK north, M»l, 

dig^uat to u< in IftDguaco anythloc but 

The l'r«i.icnt uid Commudsnt bsvo 
now «om<> in, picnd guilty to th^ir fall- 

66. Tbe first issue of Tape, in which students complained about military life 
on campus. 

The Great War 





Whkt i: 

it: A ft 

M, th. good wife 

» •Wout enu«llr a 

good in dewgning 

band 19 m plBonini 

an intelligent mi 

to wear these un« 

) of URipl)^ calis- 

'^iCw'we have i 


Voiir pareiilH hIiuiiIiI be niHil«> ucqmiiittecl with 
caiid[ll<iii!i lit thlx pliicr ol Libt'ral niiil Trch- 
iiiral LpariiinK. to nhicli they sent yoii. 

students' puanis are enUUed to & complete knowledge of the condl 
UOQS sniroaiidljig tbelr miu tad dAUKbten. the unlverdty office con 
slstoQtly deprives them of any oppoitmUt; of getting that knowledge 
thU year, this paper presenta the roal facta, deplorable though they are — 
mall It to your pareota, let them hrlng pressare to bear. 

iDded i 

of Hot 

be icaloualy (though ever broadly and rationally and fairly! comba 
inspired ideal of a broad, worthy man. who was a noble, and a cons 


t "Serg," (with Apol 

L crasoe Oo with Friday on 
Saturday Night?") 

was to graduate men who were 
trained in both mihtary and aca- 
demic subjects and ready to be- 
come officers, perhaps someone 
thought that the mihtary organi- 
zation would prepare young men 
more thoroughly for the army 
than would a civilian structure. 

There is some evidence that 
Major Frazier was the guiding 
force in the plan; had he stayed, 
he might have been able to carry 
out the program successfully. For 
overseeing the metamorphosis of 
civilian students into cadets, 
however, Captam Reagan was an 
inappropriate choice. Lovett 
wrote later that Reagan was not 
only inadequately prepared for in- 
struction and the mamtenance of 
discipline as commandant, but 
he also failed to develop the nec- 
essary skills while he held the 
position.'" In December 1917 
Lovett had tried to have Reagan 
replaced, but the army needed all 
its other officers elsewhere. His 
appeal was in vain. In December 
or early lanuary Lovett admitted 
to the student officers that he re- 
garded Captain Reagan as un- 
suitable, and they discussed the 
difficulty of trying to turn Rice 
into a military institution. He 
asked the young men to carry on 
patiently, but their discontent 
was too deep. Whoever published 
Tape took matters out of the 
hands of either the president or 
the student officers. Tape charged 
that the president's request called 
on students "to help him con- 
tinue a system that is killing 
Rice Institute.'" 

Professor Graustein, who re- 
ceived much criticism as head of 
the Military Committee, said 


The Great War 


67. The Students' Army Training Corps. 1918. 

later that he thought the students 
had protested because they had 
"no conception of the necessity 
of individual discipUne as part of 
preparation for war service." The 
situation could also have arisen 
from the difference between play- 
ing soldier, as the students had 
done the previous year, and actu- 
ally becoming one." 

But there also seems to have 
been faulty communication be- 
tween the administration and the 
student body. Student commit- 
tees attempting to lodge formal 
protests claimed that they re- 
ceived no satisfaction, not even a 
decent hearing; it appears that 
Lovett, Graustein, and McCants 
made no attempt to talk with 
student leaders before sending 
the defensive letter to parents. 
Yet it is curious that the requests 
the students made of the board 
were, with one exception, not 
concerned with the arbitrariness 

of the Military Committee or the 
poor food, as emphasized in the 
campus meetings and in Tape. In- 
stead, they concerned more im- 
mediate matters; they impress 
today's reader as being rather 
minor grievances. The trustees' 
answers and new regulations cer- 
tainly took no power from the 
Military Committee." 

The one exception and the re- 
quest with the most enduring 
consequences was the desire for a 
students' association. This idea 
had surfaced the preceding spring 
and had provoked considerable 
discussion among the students. 
The first letter to the Thresher 
that had proposed such an organi- 
zation introduced a notion of stu- 
dents' having a voice in athletic 
affairs, but that idea was quickly 
vetoed by the students them- 
selves. Student opinion was di- 
vided on the real need for an 
association. Some saw no reason 

to elect the managers of various 
student activities; others advo- 
cated a formal organization to en- 
courage a spirit of unity and 
intelligent interest in the affairs 
of the student body. Why Presi- 
dent Lovett should have opposed 
the idea of an organization, as 
spokesman lay Alexander told 
the meeting, is something of a 
mystery. It is possible that he 
thought it unnecessary, since the 
classes and the Honor Council 
were already established and 
there was no overwhelming stu- 
dent interest. In any event, the 
students were granted their asso- 
ciation; they soon devised a con- 
stitution and elected officers." 

The impression left by the 
Thresher accounts of this con- 
frontation is that the board recog- 
nized the truth of the students' 
assertions and changed the reg- 
ulations. However, no formal 
vote was taken at the board meet- 

The Great War 


ing on February 6, the only one 
on record between the two ses- 
sions with the students. It is 
more hkely that the trustees al- 
lowed Lovett, McCants, and the 
Military Committee to change 
the regulations themselves, in 
the same way that McCants' let- 
ter to parents had been sent "by 
order of the board of trustees." 
The administration knew much 
better than the trustees which 
regulations were important; but 
considering the temper of the 
students, it was more discreet to 
announce the new rules as issu- 
ing from the board. It appears 
that the trustees were polled at 
least informally for their opin- 
ions of the regulations; chairman 
Baker stated that the board unan- 
imously opposed women's drill. 
School authorities also kept con- 
trol over the new Student Associ- 
ation. The faculty approved the 
association's constitution with 
the distinct understanding that 
measures passed by the associa- 
tion concerning the academic or 
general policies of the school 
would be regarded merely as peti- 
tions and recommendations to 
the proper authorities.'" 

By the time school ended in 
the spring of 19 18, a student 
committee chaired by ]. P. Cole- 
man had written the first Student 
Association constitution, and 
students had elected officers for 
the Student Council, the govern- 
ing body of the association. Of- 
ficers elected in May were H. T. 
Dodge, president. Marguerite 
John, vice-president, H. Le Roy 
Bell, treasurer, and Jay Alexander, 
councilman-at-large. There was 
no secretary under the first con- 

stitution. Officers for 1918-19 
were H. L. Bell, president. Mar- 
guerite John, vice-president, J. 
Frank Jungman, treasurer, and 
Maurine Mills, secretary. The 
association was to organize and 
oversee interclass and intercolle- 
giate relations, class customs and 
privileges, and matters that came 
within the province of the stu- 
dent body. Membership was open 
to all students of the Institute 
through payment of a blanket 
tax, which also covered subscrip- 
tions to the Thresher and the 
Campanile and admission to all 
Rice athletic contests. Editors-in- 
chief, assistant editors, and busi- 
ness managers for both campus 
student publications were also 
elected under this constitution. 
Women wrote into the constitu- 
tion an organization of their own 
to deal with matters pertaining to 
their interests on campus: the 
Women's Council supervised the 
women's clubs and any other 
campus-wide activity directed by 
the women students. The consti- 
tution of the Women's Council 
excluded only that which fell un- 
der Fionor Council jurisdiction.'' 

For commencement in 19 18 
Dr. Lovett had his own good 
news — several scholarships and 
a lectureship to announce. Cap- 
tain and Mrs. James A. Baker 
had founded a studentship named 
for their eldest son, the late 
Frank Graham Baker. It would be 
awarded for high academic stand- 
ing and would be open to both 
male and female undergradu- 
ates. The Graham Baker Student 
would hold the scholarship for 
a year and receive a stipend of 
$360. (The amount has been 

raised from time to time, to $950 
in 1981.) The second set of schol- 
arships was given by the late 
Lionel Hohenthal, a Fiouston 
businessman, as a memorial to 
his parents and brother. Six Fio- 
henthal Scholars would receive 
stipends of $200 each, and like 
the Graham Baker Studentship, 
the Flohenthal was based on high 
scholastic standing and was open 
to men and women. The lecture- 
ship and four additional scholar- 
ships were the gifts of Estelle B. 
Sharp, widow of oilman Walter B. 
Sharp. The Sharp Lectureship in 
Civics and Philanthropy estab- 
lished a new department for the 
training of social workers for the 
South. The scholarships were 
open to graduates of Rice and 
other institutions and were to be 
awarded for graduate training in 
social work.'" 

The Students' Army 
Training Corps 

By the summer of 19 18, January's 
uproar over the ROTC turned out 
to be pointless. The federal gov- 
ernment stepped into the college 
military situation and changed 
procedures considerably. Great 
German offensives, the perilous 
situation of the Allies, the lower- 
ing of the draft age to eighteen, 
and America's effort to send as 
many recruits as possible to Eu- 
rope combined to put an enor- 
mous amount of pressure on 
colleges. If war continued for 
long, the draft might actually 
empty the colleges and univer- 
sities of students and faculty, 
causing the collapse of the entire 


The Great War 

system of higher education in the 
United States. On the other hand, 
the college student body was 
an important military asset as 
a source of potential officers. 
Furthermore, the students were 
already situated in places with 
good training facilities; new 
camps would not be needed. A 
well-planned system of mili- 
tary instruction for college men 
would foster patriotic participa- 
tion in the war effort while justi- 
fying their studies, and would aid 
the colleges in surviving the war. 
To this end Congress authorized 
the establishment of the Stu- 
dents' Army Training Corps, the 
SATC. Units were established on 
at least four hundred academic 
campuses in 1918. Competent 
army officers were sent to run 
the programs, and the schools be- 
came armed camps. The Rice In- 
stitute joined the rest.'" 

When classes convened in the 
fall of 19 1 8, many changes had 
been made. First, the student 
body was severely depleted by en- 
listments and the draft and by 
what was supposed to have been 
a practice training camp at Fort 
Sheridan, Illinois. A contingent 
of Rice students had attended the 
ROTC camp there in the sum- 
mer, assuming they would be 
back at the Institute in the fall. 
At the last moment, however, 
they were commissioned and 
sent to the army. The students 
who returned to school found a 
real army camp and many new- 
comers who had arrived for mili- 
tary training. All able-bodied 
students who were United States 
citizens became soldiers in the 
SATC and subject to military dis- 

cipline. In charge was another 
retired army officer, Colonel 
Charles I. Crane. The army sent a 
staff with him, and this time the 
unit ran smoothly 

Under the SATC, the students' 
new schedule was more rigorous 
than It had been under the ROTC. 
Drill occupied two hours each 
morning; the period from 7:30 to 
9:30 at night was given over to 
"supervised study." In addition to 
everything else, students had to 
attend a special war issues course 
that combined English composi- 
tion, history, political science, 
and philosophy. All of this left 
little time for more normal col- 
lege pursuits. Football games did 
continue (the Owls played a sth 
Division Army team as well as 
teams from Kelly Field in San 
Antonio and the University of 
Texas), but other extracurric- 
ular activities dwindled. The 
Thresher, like student news- 
papers all over the country, sus- 
pended publication. 

The Campus Returns 
to Normal 

Fortunately the war ended in No- 
vember, and the SATC began to 
demobilize and discharge that 
very month."' Both students and 
faculty were glad to be rid of it. 
In faculty meetings the question 
of retaining any military features 
on campus was unanimously an- 
swered with a resounding no. All 
forms of the military regime 
should vanish as soon as practica- 
ble. President Lovett notified the 
army that the school did not 
even want an ROTC unit on 

campus. The experiment had 
been interesting in some ways, 
but everyone wanted to get back 
to business as usual in the spring 
of 1 9 19. The Thresher started 
publishing again, class and Stu- 
dent Council officers were elected, 
students resumed their regular 
studies, and many former class- 
mates came home from the war.'° 

Rice was not, however, un- 
affected by the experiences of the 
war and its aftermath. The most 
lasting change was in the Insti- 
tute's administration. It had be- 
come clear, partly because of the 
Tape episode and partly because 
of the growth of the school, that 
Rice needed formal administra- 
tors, with specific duties and ju- 
risdictions. Dr. Lovett traveled a 
good deal in his role as president, 
and the university needed some- 
one explicitly in charge when he 
was out of town. One of the stu- 
dents' major complaints had been 
the difficulty and impersonality 
of bringing grievances to and ob- 
taining redress from McCants 
or the Military Committee. Dur- 
ing the summer of 19 18 Lovett 
and lames Baker had begun to 
discuss with members of the 
board and the faculty the idea of 
appointing a dean as their liaison 
with the students. Stockton Ax- 
son favored having a dean as a 
"shock-absorber" to deal with 
the students, learn their views, 
and help them when needed. 
Raymond R Hawes, instructor in 
education, testified that the pro- 
cedure of applying to committees 
and faculty advisers seemed "ar- 
bitrary" to the students: "irra- 
tional, autocratic, mechanical, 
and coldly inhuman." But in- 

The Great War 

stallation of the SATC in the fall 
had precluded any immediate ac- 
tion by the board." 

As soon as the SATC had dis- 
banded, Lovett brought the mat- 
ter of the dean and two other 
offices before the board. He rec- 
ommended authorizing a dean to 
oversee student attendance, con- 
duct, and discipline; a registrar to 
keep all records of registrations, 
attendance, examinations, and 
academic standing of the stu- 
dents; and a bursar to have re- 
sponsibility for business and 
material equipment and to act as 
purchasing agent for all depart- 
ments. On February 26, 1919, the 
trustees appointed Robert G. 
Caldwell, assistant professor of 
history, as dean; Samuel G. Mc- 
Cann, instructor of history, as 
registrar; and John T. McCants, 
secretary to the president, as bur- 
sar. Caldwell remained a history 
professor, while McCann became 
an instructor in jurisprudence 
and McCants an instructor in 
business administration. (It ap- 
pears that the decision to include 
a course in business administra- 
tion in the university program 
was connected with increasing 
pressure for some degree of com- 
mercial instruction in the regular 
liberal arts plan. "By entrusting 
this work to Mr. McCants, these 
pressures could be controlled and 
confined within limits as little 
harmful to the goals and pur- 
poses of the humanities as could 
be expected from this intrusion 
of vocational instruction," histo- 
rian Floyd Seyward Lear later 

There is some indication that 
the position of dean was intended 

to be temporary and strictly sepa- 
rate from professional duties — 
temporary because many circum- 
stances might make it necessary 
to resign the office, and separate 
so that the officeholder had nei- 
ther to give up his academic ac- 
tivities (as professor of history in 
this case) nor to prejudice his ac- 
ademic salary or position. In the 
first few years Caldwell received 
two salary checks, one for each 
position. This was not the day 
of highly paid administrators 
at Rice; Caldwell received only 
$1,000 for his deanship, and 
his entire salary for the school 
year 1919-20 was 84,000. As it 
evolved, the deanship remained 
neither temporary nor separate. 
Caldwell found that the separate 
spheres merged and that his own 
work as a historian suffered. 
Hardly temporary, Caldwell was 
dean, the dean of the Rice Insti- 
tute, for fifteen years, until he 
left to become ambassador to 
Portugal in 1933." 

Public Reaction to 
Rice Professors 

Besides hastening the organiza- 
tion of a formal administration, 
the Great War and its aftermath 
had another, less salutary effect 
on the Rice Institute: off-campus 
opinion about professors' views. 
From the earliest days, Hous- 
tonians and other Texans had 
paid close attention to Rice lec- 
tures on history, philosophy, reli- 
gion, and biology. lulian Huxley, 
speaking in 191 6 on biology and 
man, sex, the state, and religion, 
had stirred up a controversy 

when he advocated equal rights 
for women and introduced the 
idea of human evolution from a 
tailless ape. One Huxley lecture 
on the development of religion 
provoked a letter to the editor of 
the Chronicle asking if Rice stu- 
dents were not being misled and 
prejudiced against Christianity 
by a professor "obsessed by the 
idea of evolution" and deter- 
mined to apply that unproven 
theory to religion. A local citizen 
who had seen a newspaper article 
on Tape had written Captain 
lames Baker to state his support 
for the students' right of petition 
and, incidentally, his opposition 
to the teaching of "Infidelity, Ag- 
nosticism and Evolution.""- 
A potentially more serious 
matter involved the Houston 
Ministers' Alliance, an organiza- 
tion of some of the city's Protes- 
tant clergy. In 1918 the alliance 
requested a statement from Presi- 
dent Lovett on two points: did 
the president and board "endorse 
and approve the teaching of athe- 
ism, agnosticism or infidelity" by 
the teachers at the Institute, and 
did the president and board inter- 
pret academic freedom as guaran- 
teeing teachers "the privilege of 
publishing and declaring as truth, 
certain individual views which 
ignore the being of God, discredit 
the belief in the inspiration of the 
Bible and repudiate the thought 
of faith in the Divinity of Jesus 
Christ"? While the ministers said 
that they recognized they had no 
just cause in asking that the fac- 
ulty declare their religious con- 
victions — or lack of them — and 
that the board had the right to 
hire whomever they pleased — 


The Great War 

"Mohammedan, Buddhist, pa- 
gan, or Christian" — the ministers 
still thought themselves "in the 
bounds of courtesy, fairness and 
right" in asking for a statement. 
President Lovett suggested to 
the board that he respond to the 
questions first by pointing out 
how Rice had sought to give ex- 
pression to the religious aspect of 
the university. Members of the 
clergy had participated in an im- 
portant way in the formal open- 
ing and dedication in 19 12 and 
had continued to take part in 
commencement convocations. 
Nor were the students without 
religious guidance. The YMCA, 
YWCA, and Menorah Society 
were official organizations, and 
each year the school sent to ap- 
propriate clergy of every denomi- 
nation the names and addresses 
of students who had indicated a 
religious preference. Further- 
more, the trustees as individuals 
were known to support religious 
enterprises in the city, state, and 
nation. Concerning the questions 
raised by the Ministers' Alliance, 
however, Lovett did not want to 
take a position. He suggested an- 
swering that the board neither 
approved nor disapproved the 
teaching of atheism or theism, 
agnosticism or gnosticism, in- 
fidelity or fidelity. Neither did 
the trustees interpret academic 
freedom as guaranteeing or deny- 
ing the religious convictions of 
the faculty. In other words, "The 
Trustees in their corporate capac- 
ity cannot commit the university 
to the advocacy of either side of 
controversial theological ques- 
tions." Lovett also doubted that 
any group of theologians would 

agree unanimously on the contro- 
versial points in the ministers' 

Lovett did not think that he 
was dodging the questions with 
these answers; rather, he thought 
that he was facing the issue 
squarely. "We are building a uni- 
versity," he wrote, "not a school 
of Hebrew theology, nor of Chris- 
tian theism, nor a school of ra- 
tionalistic philosophy, nor of 
mechanistic interpretation of the 
universe, nor of any one of a 
hundred other special systems 
of thought or speculation or 
knowledge or faith." A university 
sought the truth, and a university 
that imposed its trustees' individ- 
ual views (no matter what kind) 
on Its students was a contradic- 
tion in terms to Lovett. The 
search for truth could flourish 
only in an atmosphere of respon- 
sible freedom in which people 
looked at all sides of an issue. 
Lovett thought that the strength 
of the Rice foundation lay in its 
freedom; neither partisan, sec- 
tarian, nor educational prejudices 
stood in the way of the trustees, 
faculty, and students. He did not 
believe that the university ex- 
isted in a vacuum; quite to the 
contrary, he knew that the rela- 
tionships of university to state 
and university to church were as 
important as freedom from con- 
trol. He saw all three institutions 
not as fixed and final but as fluid 
and forming, constantly chang- 
ing, each helping the other. (The 
president was an optimist; he 
thought that change was usually 
for the better.) At the same time, 
he believed that the spirit of sci- 
ence in universities and the con- 

cepts of duty, conduct, and deity 
in religion led to a better life and 
civilization. While the religious 
and scientific aspects of this uni- 
verse were separate, they could 
blend. Lovett believed that a 
comprehension of modern sci- 
ence combined easily with a pro- 
found and reverent faith. One did 
not exclude the other, as the 
Ministers' Alliance evidently 

Politics, not religion, caused 
the next occasion for disharmony 
between the people at Rice and 
Houstomans. In May 1919 Russia 
was much on people's minds. Its 
Communist leaders were talking 
of worldwide revolution, and 
some fighting was still going on 
in northern Russia and Siberia, 
where Americans had joined the 
British and others in intervening 
in the Russian civil war. It would 
not be long before the United 
States would go through a period 
of internal suspicion called "the 
Red Scare." 

The controversy started in- 
nocuously. Lyford P. Edwards, in- 
structor in sociology, spoke to 
the adult Sunday school class of 
the First Congregational Church 
on Russia and the Soviet govern- 
ment during a series of lectures 
entitled "Ideals of Social lustice." 
The theme of this series was the 
forms of government maintained 
in European countries and their 
adaptability to modern society. In 
the course of his lecture, Edwards 
remarked that if the Soviet sys- 
tem was successful and became 
permanently established, then in 
a hundred years Lenin would be 
considered in Russia in the same 
way that George Washington was 

The Great War 


regarded in the United States. Ed- 
wards thought that Lenin was a 
greater ideahst than Washing- 
ton — that he was, in fact, one of 
the greatest ideaUsts of all times 
and that the Soviet form of gov- 
ernment would prove to be su- 
perior in efficiency to all others. 
He also referred to Washing- 
ton's legendary honesty, saying 
something to the effect (his exact 
words cannot be reconstructed) 
that that integrity was not above 
question. J. W. Hawley, a guest of 
one of the Sunday school mem- 
bers, took exception to Edwards's 
remarks. After an argument that 
included other members of the 
class, Hawley and his host walked 
out rather than hear Washington 
and the country "maligned." 
These facts seem cleat; but 
soon the situation became more 
complicated. First, the Houston 
Post reported the episode with 
headlines claiming that Edwards 
had praised the Soviets and Lenin 
(spelled "Lenine" in the papers). 
Four days after the event, an edi- 
torial in that paper called Ed- 
wards "an incubator of bolshe- 
vism" and "a morbid intellec- 
tual" and labeled his remarks 
"utterances that smack of trea- 
son." Next A. E. Amerman, the 
mayor of Houston, ordered an in- 
vestigation of the lecture by the 
city attorney, Kenneth Krahl. The 
major sent the affidavits and 
statements gathered in the inves- 
tigation to the Rice trustees and 
told them that he regarded Ed- 
wards's remarks as only "an in- 
temperate effervescence of an 
over-specialized mentality." He 
said, however, that the time had 
come to choose sides: "pure 

old-fashioned Americanism" or 
the new "freak" doctrines. The 
mayor thought that Rice stu- 
dents' minds were being "warped 
in pursuit of these intellectual 
'isms.'" Captain Baker responded 
that the trustees would conduct 
their own investigation as soon 
as they all returned to Houston. 
(Almost all of them had been out 
of town when the story first ap- 
peared in the papers.) Baker was 
not particularly happy with what 
he called the newspaper's "hue 
and cry." He and trustee John T 
Scott called for calm and a sus- 
pension of judgment until the 
facts could be ascertained. 

While the board tried to deter- 
mine the true story, both sides 
gathered their support. Thirty- 
one members of the Sunday 
school class sided with Edwards. 
Dean Caldwell of Rice pointed to 
Edwards's war work and sub- 
scription to Liberty Bonds, even 
though Edwards was a Canadian 
citizen. Rice students supported 
the sociology instructor but 
fanned the flames of controversy 
with a demonstration waving red 
banners and a statement by one 
student that Edwards had mis- 
judged his audience, thinking he 
was "talking to a group com- 
posed entirely of intelligent per- 
sons and it turned out he wasn't." 
For the other side, the Axson 
Club, a group of women in- 
terested in literature but not 
formally affiliated with the Insti- 
tute, called for Edwards's dis- 
missal. The Post continued to 
publish editorial statements on 
the matter: "Still, if there are fi- 
broid-brained fools in this com- 
munity who think that Rice 

Institute ought to develop its 
technological courses before in- 
stituting a Chair of Bolshevism, 
we reckon it would be better to 
humor their ignorance and preju- 
dice. Bolshevism is just a little 
too intellectual for the most of 
us." And, "Of course, if Dr. L. R 
Edwards doesn't like George 
Washington, he might find a 
character that would suit him 
better in the late Benedict Ar- 
nold, John Wilkes or Aaron Burr." 
(The commentator seems to have 
forgotten John Wilkes Booth's 
last name.) 

Two weeks after Edwards's 
eventful lecture, the Board of 
Trustees reported their decision. 
They had found it impossible to 
determine whether or not the 
views Edwards expressed in his 
lecture were unpatriotic,- of the 
members of his audience, only 
the two who walked out had 
taken exception to what he had 
said. Statements gathered from 
witnesses were variant and 
contradictory. From everything 
the board knew of Edwards, he 
was loyal and patriotic and had 
proved those qualities during the 
war. Nevertheless, they asked for 
his resignation, because "he pos- 
sesses certain views in respect to 
the political conditions in Rus- 
sia, the character of Lenine, and 
some of the prevailing sentiment 
of the people of this and the Al- 
lied countries, and so contrary to 
the fundamental principles of our 
government, as, in the opinion of 
the Trustees, to utterly destroy 
his further usefulness to the In- 
stitute." The trustees went on to 
express their belief in academic 
freedom but noted that, "in times 


The Great War 

like these," indisereet persons 
might impair their influence or 
destroy their usefulness by word 
or deed. The board pledged to 
hire no one who did not measure 
up to the highest standard of 
American citizenship. 

Edwards tendered his resigna- 
tion and left town, a bit more 
abruptly than he had planned. 
Several friends came to his rooms 
and warned that a mob was form- 
ing downtown to come out and 
"get" him. Edwards hurriedly 
packed his belongings into a suit- 
case and boarded a train for Chi- 
cago "at a subordinate station at 
an uncomfortable hour." 

Both the Post and the Chroni- 
cle congratulated the trustees for 
a fair-minded and unprejudiced 
investigation and congratulated 



;Rice Institute Instructor on 
I Sociology Declares He Was 
Grossly Misquoted in His 
Russian References. 

Harry W. Freeman, Attorney. 
Also Comes Forwarc^ ^ ith 
Statement on Study Civcle 

, at Congregational Church. 


Dr. F. C. Edwards Declares 

in Lecture That Lenine Is 

Greater Idealist Than 

George Washington 



J. H. Hawley Takes Issue 

With Speaker When the 

Honesty of U. S.'s First 

President Questioned 


President Lovett of Institute 
Announces That Dr. Ed- 
wards' Preachments 
Will Be Sifted 


H.FI. Robinson Makes .\f- 1 
fidavit That Rice Instruct- 
or -Asserted Lenine 
Superior to W ilson 


In Letter City's Executive Transmits Testimony 
Taken in Developing "Social Justice ' Utter- 
ances of Dr. Lyford Edwards in Sociological 

Captain James A. Baker. Chairman of the Board 
of Trustees of the Institute, Announces a 
Thorough Investigation and Invites the PublicI 
To Join Therein. 

68. Headlines from the Houston Post and Houston Chronicle about the speech of sociology instructor Lyford P. 
Edwards, May 14-19, 19 19. 

The Great War 


the pubhc and themselves for in- 
spiring the trustees to decide the 
matter in a manner favorable to 
their viev^^s. The trustees, how- 
ever, were unhappy about the up- 
roar and expressed their displea- 
sure in the second half of their 
statement concerning Edwards's 
resignation. They spoke of the 
possible damage done to the In- 
stitute by the discontented mem- 
bers of the Sunday school class, 
by the local press, the mayor, the 
complaining organizations, and 
some citizens at large. The Insti- 
tute could do Its best only when 
it won the devotion of its stu- 
dents and the respect and confi- 
dence of their parents. Charges 
against the loyalty of any faculty 
member, charges broadcast by 
press and pulpit, charges made 
without the chance for responsi- 
ble investigation did "incalcula- 
ble harm" to the Institute. The 
trustees would have preferred 
that the original complainer, 
Hawley, had laid the matter be- 
fore the president or the board 
first and that the press had pur- 
sued the same course. They de- 
plored the melodrama of the 
episode and the demand for sen- 
sationalism shown by all parties. 
They even compared that de- 
mand to "the depraved taste of 
the populace" in the "decadent 
days" of Rome. The trustees 
closed their statement by ex- 
pressing their hope that the 
Houston public would be helpful 
and cooperative; they pledged 
their receptiveness to suggestion 
and advice on any matter affect- 
ing the Institute. 

The students indicated their 
displeasure with the board's ac- 

tions by holding a short demon- 
stration for Edwards in the Com- 
mons, but they could do little 
else. The faculty, who had re- 
frained from comment during the 
week's events, passed a resolu- 
tion on academic freedom. It 
stated their position that every 
instructor should be responsible 
for ability, character, and con- 
duct, not for personal beliefs. It 
argued further that actions that 
limited freedom of thought and 
cast doubt on the honesty of 
teaching seriously compromised 
the independence of the univer- 
sity. However, the faculty did not 
condemn the board but promised 
its cooperation in service to the 
community and to the broader 
cause of education. There were 
rumors that several faculty mem- 
bers were going to resign, even 
that President Lovett was consid- 
ering that measure himself; but 
no one did. 

The Evans episode points to a 
public relations problem that 
Rice, its trustees, and its presi- 
dent faced from the beginning. 
Often the view of the institution 
held by its board, administration, 
and faculty contrasted with the 
public's estimate. During the 
time when the first buildings 
were being constructed, Hous- 
tonians wanted to know what 
was happening at "their" Insti- 
tute. The board members, on the 
other hand, saw the Institute as 
their personal concern, as indeed 
legally it was. To such business- 
men, who were accustomed to 
handling their own affairs with 
no aid and certainly without di- 
vulging the reasons for their ac- 
tions, an intrusion into their 

domain by the mayor and the 
press was unwelcome. The public 
outcry was exacerbated by the 
widespread ignorance that most 
Houstomans had about what ac- 
tually went on at Rice. Almost 
all they saw or heard or read 
about the school concerned sports 
results or the scheduled public 
lectures. With the exception of a 
few professors such as Lovett, 
Axson, and Tsanoff, Rice faculty 
seldom ventured off campus; 
they were not widely known or 
connected with events noticed by 
the general public. Both Houston 
newspapers noted the aloof- 
ness — to some, snobbery — of 
the people at the Institute; the 
Chronicle called for information 
on the university's good works, 
"instead of hearing of it only 
when some freak discussion has 
taken place." One writer called 
for more statements of Dr. Lov- 
ett's views and asked the presi- 
dent to "identify himself more 
with the student life and the ev- 
eryday life of the town." 

Except for Edwards's departure, 
very little changed as a result of 
the imbroglio over his lecture. 
The board continued to conduct 
its affairs without advice from 
outside, and the Institute au- 
thorities returned to dealing 
with normal problems involving 
students, grades, lectures, and 


Consolidation: The 1920s 

In 1 92 1 two Rice students, Eli- 
sha D. Embree and Thomas B. 
Easton, veterans of the war, pub- 
lished a httle picture book called 
The Flying Owls: Rice Institute 
from the Air. The photographs 
taken from high above the cam- 
pus reveal a Rice Institute m a 
serene setting, almost afloat in a 
seemingly boundless prairie. 
Closer shots show manicured 
hedges; today's large oaks are 
only raw saplings; vintage autos 
are parked with a fine disregard 
for order or egress in front of the 
Administration Building; an eerie 
forest looms in Hermann Park on 
the other side of a newly paved 
Main Street; and a few Rice peo- 
ple loiter around the Sallyport. 
Downtown Houston appears in 
the remote background in some 
of the shots, but the Institute 
seems removed from the bustle, 
almost unpopulated. In some 
ways, however, the opposite was 
true, and the pictures of 10,000 
fans filling the stands for the 
Ricc-A&M football game on Ar- 
mistice Day might be a better 

representation of the situation in 
1 92 1, for Rice was becoming 

Enrollment had been increas- 
ing since the war ended, and in 
the 1920s it continued to rise. In 

1 92 1 approximately 860 students 
were attending the Institute; in 

1922 the number was over 900, 
and in 1923 it was about i,oso. 
The existing buildings could not 
accommodate such numbers; 
laboratories were especially 
crowded. In 1920 there were 
more registrations in chemistry 
classes than there were desks. 
The senior lab was held at night, 
and seven professors and graduate 
students were attempting to con- 
duct research in a space built for 
four. By 1923 the biology depart- 
ment had to turn down prospec- 
tive graduate students because 
there was simply no room to put 
any more.' 

Two Solutions to 

Two solutions were discussed 
and put into action. First was an 
expansion of facilities. The char- 
ter had established a sinking fund 
of one-tenth of the increase of 
the endowment, to be used for 
betterments and improvements. 
The fund had accumulated suf- 
ficient value to finance a new 
building, and in 1923 the Board 
of Trustees laid the cornerstone 
for the Chemistry Building. De- 
signed in a simplified Mediterra- 
nean style that blended with the 
existing architecture, the build- 
ing was completed in 1925. The 
Field House had opened in 1921 
to house physical training classes 
and intramural and intercollegi- 
ate sports, and it had been the 
first new structure on campus 
since the original academic 
buildings and residential halls 
had been completed. Opening the 
Chemistry Building allowed 
classroom and laboratory facili- 
ties to expand and alleviate over- 

The 1920s 


crowding, but there was httle 
room to spare. 

The administrators of the Insti- 
tute therefore had to implement 
the second remedy: hmitmg the 
number admitted to each fresh- 
man class. The faculty had begun 
to scrutinize admission require- 
ments after the war, and in 1919 
they raised the required number 
of high school credits from four- 
teen to fourteen-and-a-half. In 
1920 the number was raised 
again, to fifteen. Entrance with 
only thirteen credits was still al- 
lowed in special cases, but some 
faculty members opposed this re- 
laxation of standards. In 192 1 the 
Admissions Committee recom- 
mended that admission with 
fewer than fifteen units be treated 
distinctly as an exception but 
that henceforth two units of 
Latin be acceptable, instead of 
three or more. These changes did 
not diminish the numbers seek- 
ing admission to Rice, however, 
and in the spring of 1923 the fac- 
ulty first considered numerical 
limits to the freshman class.' 

At this point the Committee 
on Examinations and Standing 
took over the planning of admis- 
sions. Its report, subsequently 
adopted by the faculty, called 
for refusing admission to those 
who had fewer than fifteen high 
school units; it also recom- 
mended denying freshmen per- 
mission to enroll in fewer than 
five courses except in special cir- 
cumstances. The committee 
stressed raising the quality of the 
entering class, a goal that was as 
strong a motivation for limitation 
as were the overcrowded class- 
rooms. The faculty did not vote 

I ■■■ ' '•III,.. 

69-71. Aerial photographs from The Flying Owls. 69. The Administration 
Buildmg, Physics Laboratory, and dormitory group. 70. Autry House, "The 
Owl." and Main Street Boulevard. 71. The residential halls and Commons, 
looking east across Main Street Boulevard. Autry House is across the street. 


The 1920s 

to set a specific number for the 
new class entering in the fall of 
1923, but it appears that the com- 
mittee took matters into its own 
hands and closed enrollment in 
the freshman class at 400/ 

In November 1923 the faculty 
began specific discussions about 
how to restrict the number of un- 
dergraduates, and they quickly ar- 
rived at a two-part plan. The 
philosophy behind the plan was 
based on three ideas. First, 
the faculty wanted to meet the 
increased demand for college 
training while maintaining the 
highest standards of instruction. 
Second, they wanted to admit 
students on a competitive basis 
in order to get the very best 
freshmen. To cause no injustice 
to well-qualified applicants, the 
number admitted was to be flexi- 
ble, determined both by the de- 
mand and by the facilities. Third, 

the faculty was deeply interested 
in reducing the size of classes 
in the required courses. They 
wanted a limit of thirty in each 
section of Math 100 and in the 
100 and 200 sections of English, 
Spanish, and French. 

Specifically, the plan called for 
admitting 400 freshmen direct 
from high school for the year 
1924-25. That would mean a 
freshman class of about 490, 
counting transfers and those not 
promoted from the previous year. 
Total enrollment would be ap- 
proximately 1,100. Sections in 
the required courses would be 
limited to 30 students. When the 
faculty determined admission, 
they would give preference to 
those who had the maximum 
number of units in English, 
mathematics, foreign languages, 
science, and history, to those in 
the upper half of their high school 

classes who showed special 
promise and capacity for leader- 
ship, to those who were not in 
the first two groups but who 
proved their fitness by high per- 
formance on entrance examina- 
tions, and to those who applied 
early. No candidate would be ac- 
cepted with fewer than fifteen 
units, but once chosen, appli- 
cants would be received without 
conditions. The faculty also de- 
cided to maintain the existing 
ratio of men to women of two to 
one. The freshman class of 1923 
comprised 266 men and 134 

The committee, the faculty, 
and the administration all real- 
ized that the plan might be criti- 
cized in public, and the commit- 
tee's report and a subsequent 
notice to the faculty rehearsed 
some arguments in favor of lim- 
itation. One advantage was that 
the Institute could plan carefully 
before increasing the number of 
students and could ensure that 
there would be enough faculty 
and facilities for them. The desir- 
ability of early application was 
obvious: "People prize what they 
have to make a definite effort to 
secure." The plan would weed 
out those applicants less well fit- 
ted for academic life and would 
create "a body of students care- 
fully selected to take full advan- 
tage of the opportunity which 
they have before them." Finally 
the committee emphasized that 
in presenting the plan to the pub- 
lic, the Institute should leave the 
impression not of a rigid scheme, 
but of a flexible one: practical, 
workable, and just. Rice should 
not seem to be shutting "the door 

The 1920s 


72. Exterior view of the new Chemistry Buil 

Xpnl 28, 1926. 

of opportunity permanently to 
well qualified students," or so the 
faculty thought." 

The trustees voted in March 
1924 to endorse and authorize 
the plan, and that autumn the 
Rice Institute began to limit en- 
rollment. But overcrowding con- 
tinued despite restricted admis- 
sions. Fewer students left than in 
previous years, and as a result 
nearly 1,300 students were en- 
rolled in 1926. To accommodate 
the greater numbers, there was a 
shift in the class schedules; 
classes began on the hour instead 
of the half hour (they started at 
8:00 A.M. instead of 8:30 and con- 
tinued until 1:00 P.M. instead of 
12:30) to provide another period 
each day. 

73. One of the carvings on the capitals of the Chemistry Buildmg columns. 
Dean Weiser is the dragon holding down a chemistry student. 


The 1920s 

Other Solutions 

In 1927 both tacuhy and trustees 
considered other ways to Umit 
enrollment. Registrar S. G. Mc- 
Cann suggested in May that ad- 
mission requirements be raised 
again, that only those in the top 
half of their high school classes 
be accepted, that a tuition fee of 
Sioo to S200 be charged for out- 
of-state students, and that equal 
numbers of men and women be 
admitted to all departments, in- 
cluding engineering. (Up to this 
point women and men had been 
admitted in equal numbers only 
to the academic course.) Mc- 
Cann's proposal did not carry the 
faculty. In June the board stepped 
in and voted not to accept any 
more out-of-state students. (Eigh- 
teen had already been accepted. T 
Some members of the faculty 
found this ruling disturbing. The 
following December Dean Cald- 
well, speaking for the Committee 
on Examinations and Standing, 
wrote to President Lovett to rec- 
ommend two changes in policy. 
First, the committee suggested 
that preference be given to state 
residents and that only students 
of special promise be accepted 
from elsewhere. The committee 
opposed a rigid rule excluding 
out-of-state students. Although 
cognizant of the spirit of William 
Marsh Rice's original gift and oi 
the charter provisions, the com- 
mittee also believed that the ad- 
mission of a small number of 
non-Texas residents would di- 
rectly benefit the other students 
and help the Rice Institute main- 
tain its standing as a national in- 

74-77. Interior views of the Chemistry Building, ca. 192^. 74. Industrial 
laboratory. 75- Individual laboratory. 

The 1920s 


76. Main dispensing room. 77. Lecture hall. 

stitution. Besides, m the preced- 
ing five years, the largest number 
of nonresident students admit- 
ted in any one year had been 
36. Such a small number would 
hardly cause the rejection of any 
well-prepared Houston student. 
Furthermore, Rice had to draw 
on a wide area for two desirable 
kinds of students: graduate stu- 
dents and athletes. To maintain 
both programs m the face of com- 
petition with other universities 
in the state, the Institute needed 
to admit applicants from out of 
state. Second, the committee rec- 
ommended limiting the number 
of transfers from other colleges to 
75 per year. Otherwise, admitting 
students from the growing junior 
college system might circumvent 
the limit of 400 freshmen. Stu- 
dents who had been rejected as 
freshmen could reappear as trans- 
fers to the sophomore class and 
thus increase enrollment to an 
undesirable level." 

It appears that President Lovett 
asked the committee to recon- 
sider its requests, because eleven 
days after the first letter, Cald- 
well wrote again. The committee 
now recommended that the max- 
imum number of transfer stu- 
dents be only 50, maintaining 
that accepting 400 new admis- 
sions and 50 transfers would in 
practice result in about 425 new 
students. The committee did not 
believe that such numbers would 
add substantially to costs, be- 
cause no significant changes 
would be necessary to handle 
such a small increase." 

Evidently nothing came of ei- 
ther of these communications. 


The 1920s 

because Caldwell wrote to Lovett 
again in May 1928 on the matter 
of admissions. The committee 
"cheerfully" accepted the trust- 
ees' proposal to hmit admission 
to 400 new students, including 
transfers. It again suggested a 
specific number for transfers, this 
time a maximum of 30. Caldwell 
said the committee was skeptical 
that limiting only the freshman 
class would hold down total en- 
rollment. The professors ex- 
pected that in the future a larger 
proportion of students would re- 
main for the whole four-year 
course, a likelihood they saw as 
wholly desirable. The committee 
reiterated their belief that admit- 
ting a small number of out-of- 
state students was desirable, be- 
cause this group usually contrib- 
uted far beyond its numbers to 
the best graduate students and 
athletes. Although no formal rec- 
ord exists on the issue, it appears 
that the board changed its mind 
about non-Texans; subsequent 
lists of students show several 
each year from outside the state. ' 

Caldwell's committee also 
made a financial suggestion. 
They pointed out that a large 
number of Rice students could 
afford to pay a "substantial tui- 
tion fee to help meet a partf)f the 
cost of their training." The fac- 
ulty members thought that such 
a payment, with exemptions and 
scholarships for deserving stu- 
dents, would provide for "a larger 
appreciation of the educational 
advantages of the Rice Institute." 
They realized that such a charge 
was impossible under the charter, 
but they wanted nevertheless to 
record their opinion." 

The Institute's Financial 

As the committee's suggestion 
indicated, the Institute's finan- 
cial situation was much on the 
minds of the trustees, admin- 
istration, and faculty throughout 
the 1920s. By 19 19 inflation had 
hit faculty members hard. The 
cost of living was going up rap- 
idly, while salaries remained the 
same. One professor, the physi- 
cist A. L. Hughes, estimated that 
the cost of living had risen eighty- 
five percent since his appoint- 
ment in 191 3, and his ten percent 
raise in 191 6 had done little to 
alleviate the financial pinch. 
Hughes was making $2,7 so a 
year in 19 19. The board raised 
Hughes's salary by S500 for the 
year 1919-20 and began raising 
salaries of other faculty members 
as well. In 1920 Professor Harold 
Wilson, the highest-paid faculty 
member, pointed out that univer- 
sities all over the country were 
raising salaries; he thought it rea- 
sonable to ask for an increase 

Before going to the board with 
more requests. President Lovett 
surveyed the major universities 
to find out how they were com- 
pensating their faculty members. 
He discovered that full professors 
had made between $3,000 and 
S6,ooo before the war, while after 
It they earned between $5,000 
and 88, 000. Corresponding in- 
creases were given to those in the 
lower ranks, with teachers at 
some schools receiving almost a 
one hundred percent jump in pay. 
The Rice board followed the ac- 
tion of other administrations 

and raised its faculty salaries. In 
1920-21 professors at Rice re- 
ceived from $4,500 to $7,500, as- 
sistant professors from $2,500 to 
$3,750, and instructors from 
$1,500 to $2,750. These raises in- 
creased the faculty salary budget 
from about $1 10,000 in 1918-19 
to approximately $156,000 in 
1920-21. The total Institute bud- 
get expanded from $260,000 to 
$336,000, an increase of almost 
thirty percent. From 1919 to 
1 92 1, however, net excess reve- 
nue declined from $208,000 to 
$176,000 per year." 

In 1923 and 1925 the Institute 
brought in more than $725,000 
in gross revenues, but the usual 
annual income was closer to 
$690,000. The budget for uni- 
versity expenditures rose to 
$398,000 in 1924, $491,000 in 
1926, and $518,000 in 1929. Us- 
ing accounting techniques cus- 
tomary in business, the board 
took a depreciation allowance; as 
expenses rose, net income even 
after allowing for depreciation 
declined precipitously. The low 
point for the decade was $36,000 
in net revenues in 1926. Rice's 
endowment increased from $12.8 
million in 1921 to S14.8 mil- 
lion in 1929, with most of this 
amount (about $10 million! in- 
vested in mortgage and collateral 
loans and in bonds." 

In a note to James Baker in 
1923, President Lovett men- 
tioned monetary difficulties. It 
must have hurt this man, who 
yearned to build a university of 
recognized status, to say, "The 
university's immediate and pro- 
spective revenues are inadequate 
to the realization of the pro- 

The 1920s 


gramme of instruction and re- 
search on which it has entered."" 

In the spring of 1924 editorials 
appeared in the Post discussing 
Rice's financial needs. The writer 
speculated that Rice did not re- 
ceive many gifts of money be- 
cause of its fabled endowment: 
prospective donors thought that 
the Institute was too rich to need 
help. He pointed out the finan- 
cial demands on Rice and ap- 
plauded its decision to limit 
enrollment. While he did not 
make a straightforward request 
for funds, the editor suggested 
that "it has not been the policy of 
those responsible for the institu- 
tion to solicit or invite financial 
assistance from outside, but it 
probably could be accepted." '^ 

So serious was Rice's economic 
plight that even the board's usual 
reticence to discuss the Insti- 
tute's money disappeared for a 
while. At commencement that 
lune, after the awarding of de- 
grees. Baker made the first public 
plea for donations. He disabused 
the audience of the popular im- 
pression that Rice was blessed 
with a rich endowment. Because 
the institution spent only its in- 
terest and not its principal, and 
because the size of the student 
body and the cost of upkeep were 
both increasing, its income was 
insufficient for growth. Baker 
urged citizens of wealth to donate 
funds to improve the Institute's 
financial position. In December 
before the Rotary Club, Baker 
said again that it was impossible 
to expand with the funds avail- 
able and asked Rotanans to "stop 
to think a moment and then be- 

queath a portion of your money 
to Rice Institute." No evidence 
remains of any campaign to fol- 
low up Baker's requests, however, 
and the Institute struggled on as 

Throughout the rest of the 
1920s, Houston newspapers con- 
tinued to refer to the Institute's 
need for money, and a number of 
people developed schemes for 
raising it. The year after Caldwell 
suggested that tuition be charged, 
Lovett wrote to Stanford Univer- 
sity to ask how Stanford had 
changed its charter to allow the 
charging of tuition. Beyond this 
inquiry, Lovett did not explore re- 
vising the Rice charter. It may 
have been wishful thinking con- 
sidering Rice's straits, but Lovett 
also spoke in 1928 of establishing 
a law department at Rice in the 
near future and a medical school 

lohn W. Slaughter, who became 
the Sharp Lecturer of Civics and 
Philanthropy, appealed inde- 
pendently to Houstonians for 
donations and also suggested to 
Captain Baker that it might be 
possible for the city to provide 
the Institute with funds through 
taxation. That idea did not seem 
feasible or legal to Baker; not, 
that is, until Will Hogg appeared. 
Hogg, son of a former governor 
and one of the enterprising found- 
ers of The Texas Company, was 
active in supporting higher learn- 
ing throughout the state. He pre- 
sented a plan for raising funds 
from the city, "in view of the 
benefits conferred by the Insti- 
tute upon the City of Houston." 
The proposal was brought before 

the board in May and lune of 
1929 but got lost during the de- 
pression that followed." 

Rice Faculty in the 1920s 

A large part of the rise in operat- 
ing expenses was due to growth 
in the faculty to coincide with 
expansion of the student body. In 
1920 the faculty numbered ap- 
proximately forty; in 1924 it was 
up to fifty, and by 1927 there 
were seventy professors, assistant 
professors, instructors, and lec- 
turers. Some of the most endur- 
ing and endurable teachers joined 
the Institute after the war and in 
the 1920s. In history there was 
Floyd S. Lear, an authority on Ro- 
man and Barbarian law; in biol- 
ogy, Edgar Altenburg and Asa C. 
Chandler; in English, eighteenth- 
century scholar Alan D. McKil- 
lop, George G. Williams (nur- 
turer of Rice's creative writers for 
two generations), George Whit- 
ing, and loseph Gallegly. The 
French department welcomed 
Marcel Moraud, Andre Bourgeois, 
and Fred Shelton, while Max 
Freund joined German and Lester 
Ford went to mathematics. Ar- 
thur ]. Hartsook taught chemical 
engineering and later founded the 
department; Henry Nicholas 
taught chemistry; and Robert 
Crookston came to teach me- 
chanical engineering. Frank A. 
Pattie, [r., soon to be well known 
for his "hypnotic" lectures, es- 
tablished the Department of 

There were also some notable 


The u;20S 

departures. After a short stay at 
Rice, Asa Chandler went to India 
to become head of the Depart- 
ment of Hehnmthok)gy at the 
School of Tropical Medicine in 
Calcutta. German professor Lind- 
sey Blayney moved to Denton, 
Texas, to become president of the 
College of Industrial Arts (later 
Texas Women's University). Ar- 
chitect lohn Clark Tidden re- 
signed after eleven years; the 
math department lost Percy Dan- 
iell, and French lost Albert Gue- 
rard. The heaviest blow came in 
1924, when Harold A. Wilson, 
the professor of the physics de- 
partment, decided to take the 
Kelvin Chair of Physics at Glas- 
gow University. Lovett tried hard 
to keep Wilson, and he made an 
arrangement with William S. 
Parish, president of the Hum- 
ble Oil and Refining Company, 
whereby Wilson would do con- 
sulting work with Humble to add 
to his salary. In the end, however, 
the Kelvin Chair was too impor- 
tant for Wilson to turn down. He 
had already agreed to go before 
the Humble plan was approved. 
At that news the general atmo- 
sphere in the physics department 
became one of gloom.'" 

There were also some notable 
returns. Less than eight months 
after Wilson left, Lovett had oc- 
casion to visit the Wilsons in 
Glasgow and found that they 
were not particularly happy 
there. "The honor and glory here 
may be all right," Wilson wrote 
to the president later, "but the 
salary is not enough for comfort." 
He would prefer to be back at 
Rice "with its better laboratory. I 
do not like to think of the Rice 

Physics Building without a first 
class physicist to keep up the tra- 
ditions we established there." 
Lovett moved quickly and by 
the end of the next month had 
worked out an arrangement for 
salary, the Humble consulting 
position, and a pension. The next 
fall Wilson was back in the labo- 
ratory he had built, there to re- 
main. To make matters even 
better, Asa Chandler returned 
from India in 1926, at which the 
overworked biology department 
must have rejoiced."' 

Wilson returned to a combined 
salary of $12,000 ($8,000 from 
Rice, $4,000 from Humble Oil), 
and Chandler to a professorship 
(he had been an assistant pro- 
fessor when he left) and $6,000. 
Faculty salaries rose for other in- 
dividual faculty members through 
the 1920s, and that added to the 
cost of running the university, as 
did the growth in faculty num- 
bers. But automatic raises were 
not built into the system. The 
more a man was wanted by an- 
other university, the better his 
chances were for an increase in 
salary at Rice. It appears that 
those who did not ask did not re- 
ceive increases. When given, sal- 
ary raises could be rather spec- 
tacular. In 1926 when Harvard 
approached G. C. Evans, the 
board approved a salary of $9,000 
if he would remain at Rice. (He 
had been making $6,000.) 
Radoslav Tsanoff's offer from the 
University of Southern California 
brought him a salary increase at 
Rice, from $5,250 to $7,500. In 
the case of Evans's raise, the 
board was careful to place in its 
minutes the statement, "it being 

understood that in taking this ac- 
tion, the amount of increase au- 
thorized shall, if possible, not be 
construed as a precedent for sim- 
ilarly increasing the compensa- 
tion of other professors at the 
Institute, with the idea, however, 
that the salaries of such other 
professors shall be increased from 
time to time as may be consid- 
ered advisable."'" 

The lack of a definite policy 
with regard to promotion and 
raises, plus lack of money for ex- 
pansion, led to confusion for de- 
partment heads trying to work 
out a program for their depart- 
ments. Harry Weiser of chemis- 
try remarked to Lovett in 1927 
that it was difficult to plan very 
far ahead when he did not know 
if future policy would be expan- 
sion or retrenchment. At the 
same time, it seemed impossible 
that the department would stand 
still with a group of promising 
men. Said Weiser, "I cannot urge 
the appointment of another man, 
however much I feel the need of 
him, if I know ahead of time that 
such an addition is likely to in- 
terfere with the advancement or 
salary of the present members of 
the staff."" 

Life for the Rice faculty in gen- 
eral remained as it had been dur- 
ing the first years of the school. 
There were always classes to 
teach, students to help, research 
and writing to do, and public lec- 
tures to give — more than enough 
to keep busy. Indeed, Edgar Al- 
tenburg complained in August 
1924 that his teaching and ad- 
ministrative duties left him little 
time for intensive research and 
no time for public lectures. Per- 

The 1920s 


78. The visit of the official French Mission, December 9, 1918. Left to right; M. Charles Koechlin (a composer and 
music critic), Mme M. L. Cazamian, Mrs. Edgar O. Lovett, Professor L. Cazamian, and President Lovett. 


The lyios 

79. Guests arriving for "Pershing Day." the visit of General John /. Pershing to the Rice Institute. February 5. 1920. 

haps Ahenburg was overworked; 
the Thresher reported that he had 
a nervous breakdown the foUow- 
ing spring." 

On the matter of pubhc lec- 
tures, the newspapers continued 
to take note of Rice speakers, hut 
somewhat more benignly than 
before. A talk by physicist Wil- 
son on the conflict between sci- 
ence and religion elicited an 
editorial saying that "the intel- 
lectual leadership which the Rice 
men offer, for Houston in partic- 
ular, is illustrated once again." 
After one of Tsanoff 's lectures on 

democracy, the Chronicle noted 
that members of the Rice faculty 
were willing to serve the com- 
munity and that Houston should 
take more advantage of what 
they had to give. "Incidentally," 
the article continued, "why not 
more Rice men on our public 
boards' Why not, as the first Rice 
'man' to be named by Mayor 
Monteith, Miss Alice Dean, li- 
brarian of Rice, to be a member 
of the Houston Library Board' A 
better selection could not be 

Visiting Lecturers 

In addition to lectures by Rice 
faculty members, the Institute 
community benefited from a pro- 
cession of visiting lecturers from 
other institutions. The first, in 
19 1 9, were the British educa- 
tional mission and the French 
mission to universities of the 
United States. General lohn ). 
Pershing came in February 1920 
for a tour of the Institute,- he 
planted a pecan tree in front of 
the Administration Building. In 
April of that year, former Presi- 

The 1920s 


80. General Pershing autographing a parchment commemorating his visit. 
President Lovett is in the background. 

dent William Howard Taft in- 
augurated the newly endowed 
Godwin Lectureship on Public 
Affairs. The second Godwin lec- 
turer was Sir Auckland Geddes, 
British ambassador to the United 
States, who in 1921 himself en- 
dowed a prize in writing in honor 
of his wife. (The Lady Geddes 
Prize is still a coveted honor 
among undergraduates.) Other 
visitors included Belgian poet 
and playwright Maurice Mae- 
terlinck; Sir Arthur Shipley, bi- 
ologist and vice-chancellor of 
Cambridge University; Jacques 
Hadamard of the Department of 
Mathematics of the French Insti- 
tute, College de France, and Ecole 
Polytechniquc; astronomer Henry 
N. Russell of Princeton; educator 
and philosopher John Dewey; his- 
torian William E. Dodd of the 
University of Michigan; and 
E. C. C. Baly, Grant Professor of In- 
organic Chemistry at the Univer- 
sity of Liverpool. Old Rice friends 
such as Julian Huxley and Edwin 
Grant Conklin returned to lec- 
ture, as did Louis Cazamian, a 
professor of English literature at 
the University of Paris, and 
Szolem Mandelbrojt, the Paris 
mathematician. Sir Henry Jones, 
professor of moral philosophy at 
the University of Glasgow, inau- 
gurated the Sharp Lectureship in 
Civics and Philanthropy. An 
anonymously donated music lec- 
tureship brought the respected 
American composer John Powell 
to campus to inaugurate the se- 
ries in 1923, and in 1928 the il- 
lustrious Maurice Ravel visited 
Rice. There was no lack of intel- 
lectual stimulus from the 

[ lOO 

The 1920s 

These personages received vari- 
ous honoraria for their lectures, 
and written versions of their lec- 
tures often were pubUshed in the 
Rice Institute Pamphlet; but the 
Institute did not grant honorary 
degrees to the speakers. In 1920 
Lovett raised with the faculty the 
question of granting such de- 
grees. However, there was no 
general sentiment in favor of do- 
ing so then, and evidently none 
developed thereafter. Rice still 
awards no honorary degrees, and 
avoiding this sort of recognition 
has become a strong tradition.'" 

During this decade two other 
events affected the faculty of the 
Institute. In 1920 several profes- 
sors were instrumental in form- 
ing the Houston Philosophical 
Society, a town-and-gown group 
whose purpose was "to stimulate 
interest in modern developments 
in science and philosophy." Fac- 
ulty families led active social 
lives together, and during the 
twenties a place was built on 
campus for faculty gatherings of 
all kinds. George S. Cohen, a 
Houston businessman and owner 
of Foley's department store, gave 
$125,000 to the Institute for a 
faculty club in honor of his par- 
ents, Robert I. and Agnes Cohen. 
The younger Cohen had become 
interested in Rice through his 
support of Rice athletics and 
through his assistance to many 
students who desired careers in 
business and professional life. 
William Ward Watkin designed 
the building, and Cohen House 
opened officially at homecoming 
in November 1927.'" 

81. Sir Henry tones of Glasgow, a member of the British Educational Mission 
to the United States, inaugurating the Sharp Lectureship in Civics and 
Philanthropy, November 1918. 

The 1920s 

82. Ceremony laying the cornerstone 
for Cohen House (the faculty club), 
July 26. 1927. Left to right: William 
Ward Watkin, Robert I. Cohen. Mrs. 
George S. Cohen, Mrs. Robert I. 
Cohen, Benjamin Botts Rice, 
President Lovett, E. A. Peden. Rabbi 
Henry Cohen, Thomas T. Hopper 

83. William Ward Watkm's 
rendering of the south elevation of 
the Robert and Agnes Cohen House. 




The 1920s 


One of the continuing concerns 
of the faculty was the curricu- 
lum. Except for the normal tin- 
kering with the curriculum — 
adding new courses and dropping 
old ones, tightening rules for 
scholastic probation, forced with- 
drawal, readmission, the system 
of grading — the faculty made few 
changes in the overall course of 
study. Professors continued to 
emphasize that the work was de- 
signed for a four-year course, 
built up year by year, and their 
primary worry was that some 
freshmen were unable to do col- 
lege-level work. In 1922 a new 
course called English Zero was 
adopted for those with poor lan- 
guage skills. Freshmen were to 
take this course on recommenda- 
tion of the English department, 
and upperclassmen on recom- 
mendation of two of their pro- 
fessors. English Zero carried no 
credit but had to be passed, and it 
was taught by regular members 
of the English department. 

In 1925 the faculty changed the 
school calendar. They decided 
that freshmen needed a longer 
adjustment period to college 
work before taking final exam- 
inations, so they abolished the 
old three-term system. "Prelimi- 
nary examinations" for freshmen 
and for students on probation re- 
placed the first term examina- 
tions in December; examinations 
similar to term exams were sched- 
uled for February; spring exam- 
inations were eliminated; and 
final exams were placed at the 
end of the school year. There was 
no reference to any sort of semes- 

ter system; the faculty wished to 
reemphasize that courses were 
designed to last a full year. It was 
impossible to flunk out on the 
basis of the December prelimi- 
nary examinations. February 
tests were to cover the year's 
work to that point for all stu- 
dents, but the final examinations 
covered only the work from Feb- 
ruary to May for freshmen and 
sophomores; juniors and seniors 
were to be tested over the entire 
year's work."" 

Students continued to dread 
Math 100, which was described 
in the catalog as "elementary 
analysis of the elementary func- 
tions, algebraic, trigonometric 
and exponential; their differentia- 
tion and integration." In practice. 
Math 100 concentrated on the 
calculus, since professors re- 
viewed algebra and trigonometry 
only in the first three or four 
class periods. One probable cause 
of Math 100 phobia was that stu- 
dents had usually taken no math 
courses during their last year or 
two of high school and were 
rusty in mathematical thinking 
by the time they got to college. 
An insert in the catalog advised 
high school students to take 
mathematics during their senior 
year but did little to help the 

By 1926 the mathematics de- 
partment was determined to help 
prevent failures. The math pro- 
fessors thought that students 
who were failing were capable of 
doing the work but lost courage 
when they encountered some dif- 
ficulty — even a trivial one. Per- 
haps personal instruction would 
restore their confidence and carry 

them thrt)ugh. The professors in- 
tended not to diminish the stu- 
dents' sense of responsibility but 
to develop initiative. Their plan 
called for changes in the basic 
Math 100 course, which was to 
meet for two-hour periods three 
times a week. Much of the work 
was to be done in class instead of 
as homework, so that each stu- 
dent could obtain individual as- 
sistance and supervision. Those 
who were still having trouble at 
the end of the first term would be 
placed in a new course called 
Math Zero. Like English Zero, it 
carried no credit but had to be 
passed before the student could 
reregister in Math 100, which 
was still required for graduation. 
Under this plan. Math 100 was 
redefined as elementary analysis 
in trigonometry, analytic geome- 
try, and introduction to calculus; 
but as before it remained mostly 
calculus. The results of the ex- 
periment were so successful that 
the next year the two-hour- 
period, three-times-a-week sched- 
ule was extended to Math 200 
and 210. '" 

A Change in Athletics 

Perhaps the largest addition to 
the curriculum in the 1920s 
came in 1929 with the creation of 
the Department of Physical Edu- 
cation. When the Field House 
was completed in 1921, classes in 
physical training began for fresh- 
man men as a compulsory one- 
hour-a-week class. Intramural 
games were also established for 
upperclassmen. (The women had 

The 1920s 


to fend for themselves at the Rice 
tennis courts or the YWCA.) Al- 
though students had proposed 
more supervised athletics and or- 
ganized intramural sports, they 
appear to have sparked little in- 
terest in a separate department of 
physical education, much less a 
degree in the subject. The im- 
petus for that came from Rice's 
fortunes — or misfortunes — on in- 
tercollegiate sports fields.'" 

Although there were a few in- 
dividual standouts in Southwest 
Conference play from 1920 to 
1923 — players like Marion Lind- 
sey, Eddie Dyer, Bert Hinckley, 
Edwin De Prato, and lohn Under- 
wood — the Institute's teams did 
not distinguish themselves dur- 
ing that time. Philip H. Arbuck- 
le's football team went from a 
high of second place in the con- 
ference in 1919 to fourth in 1920 
and sixth in 1921. In 1922 Ar- 
buckle retained his position as 
director of athletics but turned 
over the coaching position to 
Howard F. Yerges, who had been 
an instructor in engineering 
drawing. The Owls finished sev- 
enth in 1922 and remained in 
that position in 1923 when Ar- 
buckle resumed coaching. The 
basketball team, under a different 
coach every year (Leslie Mann in 
1920, Pete Cawthon in 1921, 
Yerges in 1922, and Arbuckle in 
1923), did somewhat better, fin- 
ishing fourth, fourth, sixth, and 
third in those years. Arbuckle re- 
signed in December 1923. At that 
point the Committee on Outdoor 
Sports under the chairmanship 
of William Ward Watkin began 
to look for a new football coach 
and director of athletics. The 

84. Football game, Rice vs. University of Arkansas (Thanksgiving Reunion), 
Rice Stadium, November 27, 1919. 

85. Pep Parade preceding football game between Rice and Tulane, 1921. 


The 1920s 

Thresher reported that the com- 
mittee wanted a man with "con- 
siderable successful experience" 
to whom they could give vir- 
tually a free rein for two or three 
years. =" 

It did not take long for Watkin 
to find a candidate, lohn W. Heis- 
man was looking for a new coach- 
ing job. Already famous, Heis- 
man had coached championship 
football teams at Clemson, Au- 
burn, and most notably the Geor- 
gia Institute of Technology. From 
there he had gone to Watkin's 
alma mater, the University of 
Pennsylvania; in 1924 he was at 
Washington and Jefferson College 
m Pennsylvania. Heisman was fa- 
mous for his winning teams and 
also for inventing the forward 
pass, the hidden-ball play, the 
center snap, and the word "hike" 
for beginning a play. During a 
long talk with Watkin in Febru- 
ary 1924 the coach announced 
his terms. Fie wanted to be m 
residence at Rice only for spring 
training and the football season, 
so that he could tend to his sport- 
ing goods firm in New York in 
the off-seasons; in spite of his ab- 
sence, he would take general re- 
sponsibility for all assistant 
coaches and teams as athletic di- 
rector. He wanted a salary of 
$9,000 and a five-year contract to 
go with the position. Watkin 
thought that Fieisman would 
soon withdraw from his New 
York business and become an "all 
year man" at Rice. In recom- 
mending his appointment, Wat- 
kin also pointed out that Fieis- 
man was willing to take Si, 000 
less than his present salary at 
Washington and Jefferson, which 

86. John W. Heisman, athletic 
director of the Rice Institute from 
1924 to 191-1. 

he wanted to leave because his 
"desire for discipline" was not 
being supported by the school. 

Although they were somewhat 
"embarrassed" by the contract 
feature of Fieisman's terms (the 
first contract offered a coach by 
the Institute) and by Fieisman's 
age (he was fifty-five but looked 
forty-eight, according to Watkin), 
the trustees agreed to the coach's 
terms and desired salary. Fie was 
to be present at the Institute 
from September i through De- 
cember 10 and from the begin- 
ning of March to approximately 
April 1 5 each year. In April of his 
first year at the Institute, Fieis- 
man proposed giving up all other 
work entirely and devoting him- 
self solely to Rice athletics for 

an additional compensation of 
S2,soo per year, but the board 
turned him down. The trustees 
did authorize Captain Baker to 
offer Fieisman additional money 
to stay in Fiouston until after 
commencement exercises; it ap- 
pears, however, that the arrange- 
ment fell through, because Fieis- 
man's salary never changed. Even 
at the part-time rate, the coach 
was making more than any of the 
professors. (Fiarold Wilson's sal- 
ary, the highest on campus, was 
$7,soo in 1924 before he went to 

Coach Fieisman hit Rice like a 
whirlwind in the spring of 1924. 
A charming man and a dynamic 
speaker (he had been a Shake- 
spearean actor on the chautauqua 
circuit), he could hold an audi- 
ence in the palm of his hand; he 
excelled at arousing enthusiasm 
for Rice sports. In addition to 
speaking, he wrote a Thresher 
column in the form of open 
letters to the students, telling 
them to publicize their school 
to prospective athletes and other 
students. His letters were pep 
talks full of words in capital let- 
ters: EVERYBODY was to SELL 
others on RICE and be a Rice 

Back east during the summer 
of 1924, Heisman became em- 
broiled in a situation that almost 
caused him trouble with the Na- 
tional Collegiate Athletic Associ- 
ation. He went to see a reporter 
for a New Jersey newspaper, and 
the story that followed left the 
impression that Heisman was 
"proselyting" among prospective 
students of New Jersey colleges. 
At that time the question of re- 

The 1920s 


cruitmg — how to do it, if it 
should be done at all, and if so, 
by whom — was very much un- 
settled. To President Alex C. 
Humphreys of the Stevens In- 
stitute of Technology, Heisman 
was poaching. Humphreys com- 
plained to the president of the 
NCAA, General Palmer E. Pierce, 
who wrote to Watkin and to 
Heisman. Watkin, in turn, wrote 
to Heisman asking for an expla- 
nation. He told the coach to clear 
up the situation with Pierce and 
Humphreys, remarking that he 
personally thought it would be "a 
great mistake" under the circum- 
stances to bring any athletes 
from the Northeast to Rice. No 
matter how properly or honestly 
they should come, criticism 
would still follow. 

Heisman saw Humphreys. 
Humphreys opposed athletic re- 
cruiting of any sort, so the con- 
versation between the two men 
began with a direct conflict. 
They managed to settle the mat- 
ter by agreeing to disagree, but 
Heisman did stop his recruiting 
activities in New lersey. 

The coach found Professor 
Watkin philosophically close to 
Humphreys. When he wrote to 
Watkin to explain the entire inci- 
dent, the coach asked what Wat- 
kin had meant by saying that 
Heisman had made "a great mis- 
take." Was the chairman of the 
Committee on Outdoor Sports 
speaking of a matter of principle 
or of university policy? Heisman 
thought it was proper in principle 
to bring boys down from the 
East, but what was the policy? 
What was the harm? 

Watkin very much wanted to 

keep amateurism m athletics and 
not turn Rice's teams into semi- 
professional ones. His ideas were 
probably not new to Heisman. 
Watkin thought that control of 
athletics should be in the hands 
of the faculty, without joint. com- 
mittees of alumni, undergradu- 
ates, and faculty such as some 
other schools had. He believed 
that athletic expenditures should 
be held to a minimum; there 
should be no extravagance, waste- 
ful traveling, or "undesirable de- 
viation" from a student's normal 
activities when he participated 
on a team. Scouting and recruit- 
ing were unadvisable, as were the 
scholarships for athletics; and 
student athletes should not be 
coddled with special courses or 
lenient grades. Watkin also be- 
lieved that coaches should be 
members of the faculty and hold 
office for as long as possible. He 
knew that a football coach's sal- 
ary was out of proportion with a 
professor's, but he expected the 
operation of the free market to 
bring those salaries down within 
a few years." 

Despite a summer of argument 
and a committee chairman with 
whom he did not completely 
agree, Heisman got off to a good 
start in his first season. The 
Owls won four and lost four foot- 
ball games, their victories includ- 
ing a defeat of the University of 
Texas by a score of 19 — 6, the 
first victory over Texas since 
1917 and only the second in Rice 
history. The team finished the 
season tied with AckM for third 
place in the Southwest Con- 
ference. Part of the credit seems 
to be due to the consistent play- 

ing of one of the two easterners 
whom Heisman had managed to 
lure to the Southwest, a big full- 
back named E. W. Herting, Jr. 

Many faculty members be- 
lieved with Watkin that athletes 
were, after all, students and en- 
titled to no special academic 
treatment. But by the spring of 
1925 it had become clear to the 
coach that Rice athletes had to 
have some help with their stud- 
ies. Those who lived in the dor- 
mitories seemed to be the most 
prone to difficulties. The Thresher 
reported that of fifty-two athletes 
of "recognized worth" who lived 
on campus, twenty-three had 
either flunked out or gone on 
probation in the two preceding 
terms. Only five of the twenty- 
six who lived at home or else- 
where in Houston had failed. 
Heisman's remedy was to create 
an athletic dorm. The athletes 
took over part of East Hall and 
buckled down to study. There 
were rules — no liquor, study 
hours with confinement to rooms, 
no visiting for freshmen or those 
on probation during those hours — 
and student proctor-tutors to en- 
force them. The regimentation 
worked fairly well, and the ath- 
letes' grades rose; but the athletic 
dorm did not eliminate academic 
failures. The next fall Heisman 
exhorted women students to en- 
courage Rice athletes to study 
and play well, and not to tempt 
them to stay out late and break 
his rules. '^ 

In 1926 the Athletic Depart- 
ment hired Gaylord Johnson '21, 
who also had a Ph.D. in chemis- 
try from Rice, to fill the newly 
created post of business manager 


The 1920s 

tor athletics. He held that posi- 
tion until 1940. 

More athletes might have been 
passing their courses as a result 
of the new dormitory arrange- 
ments, but the 1925 and 1926 
football seasons were not im- 
provements over the past. In 
1925 the Owls won four, lost 
four, and tied one, thus ending up 
in seventh place in the confer- 
ence with only one conference 
win. In 1926, although the full 
season record was the same as in 
1925, they lost all four confer- 
ence games and finished m the 
cellar. Heisman came m for 
much criticism; the Thresher 
asked, "What is wrong with Rice 
and her athletics?" The next year 
was even more dismal. Rice 
won two, lost six, and tied one, 
beating only Sam Houston and 

Before the last game, which 
happened to be the contest with 
Baylor, Heisman was ready to re- 
sign. He had suffered enough crit- 
icism; he presented his terms to 
the board on November 21, 1927. 
On December i the trustees ac- 
cepted his proposal for resigna- 
tion, and on December i Heis- 
man resigned, effective at once. 
The board canceled his contract 
and paid the rest of his salary for 
that year and a portion of the 
next. When asked why he re- 
signed, Heisman would only say, 
"I will not discuss the reasons."' 
No one else would be formally 
named director of athletics until 


For the rest of the decade, the 
Owl football team did little bet- 
ter under coaches Claude Roth- 

geb in 1928 or Jack Meagher in 

1929 and 19^0, although the 
team did beat arch-rival Texas in 

1930 and again in 193 1. As track 
coach, however, Rothgeb had rea- 
son to rejoice. The Institute had 
several conference track winners 
and record holders between 1924 
and 1927 — Fred Stancliff, Wil- 
liam Smiley, and Nelson Greer — 
and the 1928 track team won the 
conference championship. Em- 
mett Brunson (who was to be 
Rice's head track coach from 
1934 to 1970), Claude Bracey Ben 
Chitwood, and Walter Boone were 
the standouts. The golf team also 
did well, winning the conference 
title in 1929 and 1930 with let- 
termen Joe Greenwood, Forrest 
Lee Andrews, Reuben Albaugh, 
Carl Illig, Dan Smith, Jr., and 
Tommy Blake. 

What to do with the athletic 
program and how to keep student 
athletes scholastically eligible be- 
came pressing problems after 
Heisman's resignation. Before 
William Ward Watkin resigned 
his chairmanship of the Commit- 
tee on Outdoor Sports in January 
1928, he made three suggestions. 
The first involved aiding Hous- 
ton coaches to create a supply of 
good athletes, and the second was 
that alumni should encourage 
student athletes in other cities to 
consider attending Rice. His 
third suggestion was more inno- 
vative. To increase the number of 
freshman football recruits and to 
ensure their scholastic survival, 
Watkin proposed establishing a 
first-class preparatory school for 
scholastic and athletic training. 
Such a school could "in some 
manner" be directed in its educa- 
tional and athletic policy by the 

Institute and could produce a 
larger number of qualified ath- 
letes for the Rice athletic pro- 
gram. Watkin did not spell out 
any details for such a school, but 
he clearly thought that it was the 
only way to improve the athletes' 
scholastic performance, maintain 
a place in the Southwest Con- 
ference, and sustain the idea of 
amateurism in collegiate sports.'' 

The administration, trustees, 
and faculty decided on another 
solution. It IS unclear exactly 
when the proposal was first made 
and who made it, but by Decem- 
ber 1928 a joint report of the 
Committee on Honors Courses 
and Advanced Degrees, the Com- 
mittee on Examinations and 
Standing, and the faculty mem- 
bers of the Committee on Out- 
door Sports was presented to the 
entire faculty for consideration. 
It called for the establishment 
of a course in physical educa- 
tion and a Department of Physi- 
cal Education. 

Those in favor argued thus: 
although athletics in college 
should serve the purpose of giv- 
ing athletic enjoyment and devel- 
opment to a maxmium number 
of undergraduates, we have fallen 
far short of realizing that high 
purpose. We may deplore the atti- 
tude of many serious people who 
consider the victory or defeat of a 
Rice athletic team to be of great 
importance to the students, to 
the Institute, and to the commu- 
nity but we cannot change this 
fact. Because we believe that ath- 
letic sports are an indispensable 
adjunct to academic life, we en- 
courage all to participate. But the 
maintenance of an internal sys- 

The 1920s 


South nest (rolf (Juimpions 1930 

Ki<'c's fiolf li-aiii. iiniliT llic liailiT>lii|) of I'oresI Lre \ii(lrc«s. ai;ain |)ri)\eil thai 
\hf\ knr« llicir masliics in llic annual li>iirnainenl lii-lil at lloni^lon lliis year li\ lap 
Inriii!:; l»)lli (In- in(li\i(lnal anil llii' Irani rliain|(ii>nslii|(M>f the SontlmesI lonfrrrnct- 

,ii>c (;rrin«.Micl. (iiic- iif llic l>f>.| r<>lli-j;ial<- f;(ilfiTs in tin- Stair, sank Icmj; |pnll^ lion 
all lorniTs of tlif fircrn to ro|. I lit- inili\ idiial tillr «liili- (irecnwood. Blaki-. Mliaii^li 
Xndrcu!. anil lllit; tcaiiicil to retain the team ehainiiionshiii tropin la^l \ear li\ poll 
iiifl an afrnregale seore two shots helow that of Texas I ni\ersit\ . 

\llhou<:li Reiihen \lliaii':li. ia|)laiii-fleit. is llie oiiK teller inaii lo relnrii to llu 
rani|>iis next vear iiian\ \eleraii f;olfers will he on liaiiil to take the place of lliosi 
lost h\ ^raihialion u hen spriii-: rolls aroiinil. % ith Mhaii^ili's hrillianl |ila\iii;; anil 
eoaeliin^. to he relieil on ami Cole. MeCart). Diekex. \lnller. I'lalli ami other aspir- 
aiils ■;ellin^' their form perfeeleil. it is not too iiiiiih lo preiliel another ehampionsliip 
team for next season. 

Ii I 

Ihr Tn,,,ln 


87. Golf team, 19^0. Clockwise: Lee Andrews, Tommy Blake, Reuben 
Albaugh, Carl lUig. Jr.. foe Greenwood. 

tern seems impossible without 
external competition. Intercol- 
legiate games have proved to 
be extremely expensive, and the 
Institute is losing $20,000 to 
$30,000 annually. At the same 
time we have been unable to hold 
an honorable place in the South- 
west Conference, and we cannot 
maintam the interest of our own 
students, much less of the com- 
munity or conference, unless we 
win more frequently. "We are not 
willing to go on as we have been, 
and we cannot abandon athlet- 
ics." The way out appears to be a 
department of physical education 
to attract good athletes and a 
course leading to a degree of 
Bachelor of Science in physical 
education. In no way would 
Rice's high standards be lowered; 
admission would be open only to 
students whose first interest was 
to go to and through college. Fur- 
thermore, a degree in physical ed- 
ucation would not affect the 
values or standards of Rice's 
other degrees in highly technical 
or intellectual subjects. Although 
by their very nature different, 
standards for the degree in physi- 
cal education could be as high as 
those for other degrees.'" 

As presented to the faculty, the 
plan proposed that a course in 
physical education be estab- 
lished, with certain provisions. 
The number of new students ad- 
mitted each year would be lim- 
ited to 40 (over the regular quota 
of 400). The course would be 
open to any student seriously 
contemplating coaching as a ca- 
reer, and additional instruction 
would be provided m biology, En- 
glish, business administration. 


The 1920s 

and education so that students 
could obtain a teaching certifi- 
cate along with the degree. Per- 
haps most important, funds for 
the new department would come 
from outside the existing endow- 
ment but through the trustees to 
preserve the Institute's freedom 
of action. Rice's very limited in- 
come would not support the crea- 
tion of such a department with- 
out taking sorely needed funds 
from established departments, a 
move that would have alienated 
faculty members. The report rec- 
ommended, therefore, that funds 
be raised from among Houston 
businessmen. Approximately 
$20,000 would be needed each 
year for the first five years. At the 
end of five years, the program 
was to be evaluated. The faculty 
vote was thirty-six for, fifteen 
against. Caldwell, McCants, Wil- 
son, and Moraud were among 
those voting in favor, and Evans, 
Tsanoff, Altenburg, and Axson 
among those against." ' 

To raise money for the physical 
education program, the trustees 
first held a conference and then 
gave a dinner for certain Houston 
businessmen. Houstonians who 
contributed to the fund included 
Anderson-Clayton's chairman. 
Will L. Clayton; real estate and 
banking king lesse H. Jones; lum- 
ber magnates 1. W. Link and fohn 
H. Kirby; department store ty- 
coon Simon SakowitZ; and Hum- 
ble Oil founders Will Parish, 
Harry C. Wiess, and Walter W 
Fondren. Baker of the Rice board 
joined in. There were a few in- 
fluential men, such as Lamar 
Pleming, Ir., who declined to par- 
ticipate because they still thought 

that the main concern of a col- 
lege should be to provide a schol- 
arly education for "real students," 
not those whose chief purpose 
at college was athletics. How- 
ever, Pleming recognized that 
he was "utterly out of step with 
current ideas in intercollegiate 

To head the new department, 
the Institute hired Harry Alex- 
ander Scott, who held a doctor- 
ate from Columbia University. 
Scott's title was "professor of 
physical education," and he re- 
ceived in salary about the same 
as the other full professors: $6, 000 
a year. His program was designed 
to prepare men for careers in 
physical education and coaching 
in high schools, colleges, and 
other organizations such as mu- 
nicipal recreation departments, 
but it did not stop there. The stu- 
dents also took biology, chemis- 
try, education, economics, and 
business administration courses; 
they graduated with a state teach- 
er's certificate, the competence 
to teach several courses in high 
school, and business knowledge. 
They would have their own 200- 
level English class, a chemistry 
course with a morning lab, and 
two special biology courses. 
Physical education students were 
excused from Math 100. How 
the program would affect Rice's 
ability on the football field and 
whether the school itself would 
be harmed (as William Ward Wat- 
kin seemed to fear) remained to 
be seen."' 

Aspects of Student Life 

A couple of new departments, 
the limitation on admissions, and 
curricular modifications were im- 
portant to the Institute, but they 
did little to change the major as- 
pects of student life in the 1920s. 
Nevertheless, some other changes 
did have an effect. Rice was still 
new, not even ten years old in 

1920, and not many traditions 
had been solidified. Students 
were in the process of creating 
traditions and learning how to 
get along with the administration. 

One of the best and longest- 
lasting changes took place in 

1 92 1, when a building that would 
be known as the "fireside of 
Rice" opened on Main Street 
across from the campus. It re- 
placed a hut built from salvaged 
material and was under the aus- 
pices of the Episcopal Diocese of 
Texas. The original structure had 
been built through the initiative 
of the Reverend Harris Master- 
son, Jr., who wanted to minister 
to the Rice students in all their 
needs. In 1921 Mrs. James Autry 
donated $50,000 for a cultural, re- 
ligious, and recreational center 
for the students in memory of 
her husband. Judge James L. Au- 
try. The Institute's architects. 
Cram and Perguson, designed the 
building, which was completed 
that fall. Autry House was open 
free of charge to all Institute fac- 
ulty and student organizations 
and clubs. It included a canteen 
and cafeteria and was welcomed 
by students who had brought 
their lunches from home or had 
made do with what "The Owl," a 
little store nearby, provided. Stu- 

The 1920s 


88. The laying of the cornerstone for Autry House, June 5, 1921. Left to right: Wilham Ward Watkin. President 
Lovett, the Reverend Herbert L. Willett, the Reverend Harris Masterson, Dr. Peter Gray Sears. 

The 1920s 

89. Autry House, shortly after completion. 

dents made heavy use of the 
building for plays, meetings, Sat- 
urday night dances, and simple 
gatherings, especially for bridge 
games between classes. During 
the school year 1921-22, 260 or- 
ganized meetings were held there 
and 18,000 lunches served. Many 
students remember with a great 
deal of fondness both the Rever- 
end Mr. Masterson and Mrs. Eu- 
gene C. Blake, who served as 
matron for the place. An advisory 
board consisting of Mrs. Autry, 
Dr. Peter Gray Sears of Christ 
Church Cathedral, and President 
Lovett made policy decisions. Al- 
though Autry House did not 
cover Its own expenses as had 
been planned, losses were made 
up through private contributions. 
The later construction of the ad- 
joining Palmer Memorial Church, 
a gift of Mrs. Edwin L. Neville in 
memory of her brother Edward A. 
Palmer, gave students and faculty 
a nearby place to worship." 

The early twenties saw several 
Rice "firsts." "Rice's Honor" 

made its first appearance in 1922 
after the Thresher campaigned 
for a school song. Ben Mitchell 
put words to the Harvard 
"Marching Song" ("Our Director 
March" by John Philip Sousa), 
and at a pep rally in the mess 
hall, students liked that one the 
best of eight or so songs consid- 
ered. The first May Fete was held 
in 1 92 1, and even though the 
Thresher editor asked in 1922 
what it was good for, the pageant 
became an annual event. That 
first year Queen Rosalie Hemp- 
hill and King Robert P. Williams 
reigned over a lavish spectacle 
with a court of honorees from 
each of the classes. After the Rice 
Dramatic Club was formed in the 
fall of 1 92 1, the architecture and 
painting students decided to sub- 
stitute another creative activity 
for the play they had usually pro- 
duced. In February 1922 the Ar- 
chitectural Society held a 
costume ball, the first Archi- 
Arts of a long series of student- 
produced theme parties with 

highly original costumes, design, 
and entertainment. On the liter- 
ary side. The Rice Owl, a maga- 
zine for serious pieces as well as 
perfectly awful jokes, made its 
first appearance in 1922. In 1926 
another literary magazine, the 
Raven, was also published; but it 
lasted only until the summer of 
1927. The Rice Owl continued 
until 1938, then changed in 1939 
to become an alumni magazine 
as well. It was published in that 
form until 1946. 

In 1920 the Rice Engineering 
Society decided to repay the 
courtesies that companies in the 
area had shown the students, by 
inviting company representatives 
to come and see the work of the 
engineering, chemistry, and phys- 
ics departments. The society 
wanted to set up demonstrations 
and create a show, which they 
called the Rice Engineering Show. 
Henry A. Tillett, a senior me- 
chanical engineering student, 
asked President Lovett for per- 
mission to use university facili- 
ties and print a program for visi- 
tors. Lovett did not believe the 
show would attract much atten- 
tion among Houstonians. He re- 
fused to give the society any 
financial aid for a program, but 
he did allow use of the grounds 
and buildings. Perhaps because of 
Lovett's pessimism, the students 
pitched in determinedly to sell 
advertisements for the program, 
and they raised enough money to 
print one thousand copies. Lovett 
wrote to about fifty industrial 
firms on behalf of the students, 
inviting spectators to attend the 
show; but until the day of the ex- 
position, no one could predict the 

The 1920s 

90. The first May Fete king and queen. Parks Williams and Rosalee 
Hemphill, with their attendants. Albert Guerard and Molly Tidden, 
May 10, 1921. 

91. Stage sets for the first Archi-Arts Ball (Masque Espahol or Baile Espanal). 
February 3. 1922. 

turnout. Henry Tillett remem- 
bers looking anxiously out his 
dormitory window, only to find a 
number of school buses and cars 
and a Ime of visitors stretching 
from the Physics Building around 
to the Admmistration Buildmg. 
Eventually some 10,000 Hous- 
tonians saw the show that year. 

In the first show were only 
sixty-two exhibits, including a 
"bucking broncho," magnetic 
stunts, and nitroglycerin explo- 
sions. The Engineering Society 
decided in 1921 to make the 
show biennial, and to each suc- 
ceeding production they added 
more exhibits. In 1922, there 
were X-rays, liquid air, and the 
Rice radio station (syg), plus a 
coast defense searchlight from 
Fort Crockett in Galveston. Shows 
in the 1920s included "hooch 
tests" in the days of Prohibition, 
beating hearts of turtles and 
frogs, a radio-controlled car, a 
new automatic telephone switch- 
board on loan from Southwestern 
Bell (the first automatic board m 
Houston), the "den of the alche- 
mist" (with chemistry students 
as the magicians), economic ex- 
hibits, and architectural draw- 
ings. More and more departments 
participated, and by 1930 there 
were 319 exhibits. The 1930s saw 
a television receiver, psychologi- 
cal tests, a paper-bladed friction 
saw, music broadcast over a light 
beam, an "oomph meter" to "see 
what you have a date with," and 
Woofus, a mechanical creature 
described as "an inhabitant of the 
planet Venus and ... a gift . . . 
from the famous planet explorer, 
Buck Rogers."" 

The first campus traffic regula- 

The 1920s 

tions made their appearance in 
192 V An average of 154 cars a 
day on campus made it necessary 
to bring some order to the roads 
and parking lots. Nonetheless, 
the usual way to get around was 
still by walking; President Lovett 
could be seen walking to campus 
from his home at the Plaza Ho- 
tel, with his bowler hat (straw 
boater in the summer) and book- 
strap. Professors Heaps, Pound, 
McCants, and Tsanoff bicycled.^' 

Even before Coach Heisman 
stirred up the student body to 
boost Rice spirit, some of the stu- 
dents had whipped up their own 
enthusiastic support for athletic 
teams. The Thresher complained 
from time to time about the lack 
of spirit on campus and urged all 
to turn out for sports events. The 
cheering section at football 
games was led by male "yell lead- 
ers"; one Thresher editor, while 
praising the women students for 
wanting to be part of the school, 
thought it sounded better if they 
did not join the men in the orga- 
nized cheers. Heisman's arrival 
raised school spirit considerably. 
In 1925 Sammy the Owl was res- 
urrected for Rice's game with the 
Aggies, and the Rally Club was 
formed to help usher at events on 
campus, cheer for the teams, and 
be of service wherever its mem- 
bers could. lack Glenn, Rice's 
premier cheerleader, was the first 
Rally Club president. No one 
could accuse the student body of 
lacking spirit after that year.- 

Student concerns in the 1920s 
ranged from food to faculty to 
proper senior clothing. Meals in 
the Commons, often still called 
the "mess hall" (possibly for 


, h.i~.n|; ihitkiMlN. 


Oih In br,l 
Jn.1 oily It, rue, 
\Ukfi polilitians 
/f'rall/i\ am/ w/.v 

I.K.kc-.l ui~.,. thi Ijiilti uir.Ur 

•Let your counricncc Ih: vi.ur bu.Jc." «uI ihc 
vote tnhulatur to his assistant. 


What mistakts people make. Its not whose run- 
rung in these Spring elections, but whose running Here is chronicleii (he hest joke in this 
thi Spring elections. The Houston Censor Board. 

Ci>-eilucation is alright as long as girls 
allowed to attend. 

■She's in ternhlc shape. • saui the con 
king removed. 

That's well put," remarked the professional : 
hi sank a twcntv footer. 

HK S (JOT THF. .^.\K ON MK,' sighed the 

.rrv tree as C;eoree cot loose «ith a full swing. 

Uhat IS the suit worth = - 
Kifn dollars.-- 

■Alright, rii take it on account- 
On accountof what' ■ 

■On account of mv other hcing worn out. 

The frequency with which Rice men are seen 
walking the boulevar.i after dark is mereU an 
indication that thes- like to exercise. 

The office has adopted a new slogan for this 
Iniversity: ■The Rice Institute founded for the 

idvanccment of letters, science, art and athletics." 

"What arc ynu 
"Why don't yo 
"I haven't star = 

u quitr 


.: Didvouki 
:: Hardly, 
j: Sapl.Answ 

k me? 

92-93. Two pages from The Rice Owl. 92. April 1924. 93. December 1924. 

The 1920s 


■the rk^p: owi. 


nil I'llll ilM)l'HK \l I ci\ I i< 

h lluy iittol/uT, my ilarliua. 

Il'lw ilM-rs lliy/iivai-lo mi:,'- 
h then- inmlhi-r, uiy tiiirliti^, 

ll'lm aiiis,:' lli.r I', iv.r.= 


/.■ Hurt i,iH xlmsf .11 

Thy sojl ■jmriii form lit kin: 
JiiJ />■ mv hvf/tirjtikcn 

.Is Ihiiir/farilh': 

•ftht Hrt ymr tips sf>ftii- truly 

tit s/iying Ihfy's.' Ussfi/ l>nt mi»/: 
lines lliy heart ieiil imllily: 
Or ,hes thy smile en.iiHii. 

/■■eliMKs 0/ srorii ami •imnsemelli, 
•is I press my afihiroits plea: 

ll'hen I'se hleiod in my seiiis is a loireiit. 
Thill is r/igitig mity jor thee: 

ff so you mtty smite ut my passion^ 

ilnii Kith seoru your tips may eurt. 

1; sn . . I'll follow the fashion, 
.'fu/i get me another zirt- 

\l. lUOI 1: HALl.l. HAI.l ADI. 
Thaukisiven ieamen in 

Ye halfe /„;, (, /.,..;, ,/■: „U.- aroNU.l, . 


I'flsom ,«„',. 

VV rejeree .loth ealle a fo-Mt. 
.1 plaxer ■lr„i-;l,tt:M,- ■p-iMh. 
lie sm:l !■ ' J. 

Cam: Is l-lsl.i:. u..i:i-j t., ll.t- Ittlurc I..nli.|lt = 
Hert: N'.iw. Di.ln-r v,.„ .,i- Irn. .Irink .in 

Austin is in the •^r;Uc of ItxHs, is it not: 
No— It's been ,n the state of coma since Nc 
bcr first. 

more than one reason), had gone 
from bad to worse. In 1924 the 
manager resigned, the kitchen 
was overhauled, and the food im- 
proved a bit. After one food not, 
the administration levied a fine 
of thirty-seven dollars on each 
diner, whether he had partici- 
pated in the fight or not. That 
measure effectively put an end to 
such events. 

More serious were losses from 
the faculty when Wilson, Guerard, 
Blayney, and Chandler left. The 
Thresher began to ask if the 
school was still up to standard, 
whether these professors could 
be replaced, and how the univer- 
sity planned to fill their shoes. 
The paper reported that President 
Lovett would say only that stu- 
dents should know that they 
were receiving better training at 
Rice than they could anywhere 
else, and that finding new faculty 
members took time. Lovett him- 
self was traveling so much, repre- 
senting the Institute at various 
academic functions, that the 
Thresher once reported in mock 
surprise that the president had 
actually been seen on campus. 

As for dress, some seniors be- 
gan to affect canes, wing collars, 
and derbies on certain days of the 

Hazing and Social Clubs 

Connected with school spirit in 
some minds was the practice of 
hazing, which had been a part of 
student life since the first soph- 
omore class met the second 
freshman class at the door of the 
Administration Building on regis- 


The 1920s 

II. A Display of the Iiidiistiial Chemical Apparatus (ji> Hand. 
No expeiinients will he cairied (Hit with this as it is merely a 

42. This can be shown only at ni^ht and is known a.s the 
Milky Way. A solution of red phosphorus in Ether is made and 
the walls of the lab or a dark room are sprayed with it. The 
clothes of the persons present may also be sprayed without any 
harmful effects. The phosphorus gives a "spookish" effect. 

4;'>. Last, hut not least, the "("hambei- of Sighs." 
Xo advance information will he given out as to this exhibit. 
It must be seen to be appreciated. Everyone be there. It is per- 
fectly safe. 


44. Generation of Power by the Use of the Doble Water Wheel. 

The water wheel receives its impulse from water supplied t)y 

the Power House, and drives this machine so as to generate pow- 

45. Measurement of Water Flow iiy I'se of Wiers. 

Dy varying the head of watei' on the wier, the discharge is 
increased or decreased. This effect is shown by the dischaige 
curve made for this wier. In this manner the flow ovei' dams 
and spillways is determined. 

46. The Use of the Hydraulic Ram. 

The i-am receives its impulse from the velocity 

1 V CO iLo iiii^Liioc iivMii Liic \d»_'».iL\ >.» 1 tlie Wtiter 
flowing through the U-shaped pipe, and is made to pump water 
against a variable head. This piece of apparatus is used where 
a plentiful supply and natural source of water is availal)le. 

47. Pulsometer. 

This is a iyp^ of pump often used in construction work because 
it can be suspended by a lope to lower levels and controlled very 
easily from the surface. It will not operate against veiy higii 
pressures but by operating two or more in series water can be 
raised fi'om much lower levels. 

94. Page from the first Rice Engineering Show program. 1920. 

tration day in 191 3. In the 1920s, 
freshmen had their faces painted 
green, had to wear special or pe- 
cuHar clothing, and had to obey 
certain rules. (No freshman was 
to walk on the grass, for exam- 
ple.) Men were forced to push 
mothballs across the gravel walks 
with their noses and were sub- 
jected to swats with a broom or 
a paddle for infractions of the 
regulations. Hazing progressed 
through "Forestry 100" — where 
the freshmen were left to spend 
the night in Hermann Park — to 
brooming freshmen for outland- 
ish reasons, to what appeared to 
some people to be simply gra- 
tuitous beatings. Before long, 
Rice gained a reputation for being 
the second worst hazing school 
in the state,- Texas A&JVI was the 

There were those on the fac- 
ulty who thought that such a 
barbarous practice was distinctly 
out of place at an institution of 
higher learning. In 191 9, after an 
episode involving five sopho- 
mores and the freshman class 
president. Dean Caldwell moved 
to stop hazing altogether because 
nothing serious had happened — 
yet. The classes met, supported 
Caldwell, and abolished hazing 
for the remainder of the school 
year 1 9 1 8 - 1 9 and for the next 
year as well. However, abolition 
proved to be difficult to enforce; 
hazing had resumed by 1921.-" 

In lanuary 1922 the Student 
Association passed rules to con- 
trol the practice. Under this set 
of regulations, "individual, indis- 
criminate, physical hazing" was 
not allowed, and all hazing was 
to be strictly between freshmen 

The 1920s 


and sophomores. Freshmen still 
had to follow certain customs 
and such rules as the sophomores 
decided in class meetings, and 
jurisdiction over violators was 
placed with the Hall Committee 
and the Student Council. The 
Thresher defined "indiscrmiinate 
hazing" as hazing without a 
cause, or in other words, beating 
a freshman just because he was a 
freshman. The editor was some- 
what surprised that the Student 
Association had gone so far, but 
in March they went even further. 
A new hazing bill limited cor- 
poral punishment to the period 
between 6:30 in the morning 
and 8:00 at night and called for 
"discretion" in all hazing. Dis- 
satisfaction on the part of either 
freshmen or sophomores was to 
be brought to the Hall Commit- 
tee for redress.^" 

The new rules did not much 
mitigate rowdy behavior, and 
after a pitched battle in May be- 
tween sophomores and freshmen 
(which involved freshman foot- 
ball players and members of the 
Alpha Rho club), the dean, the 
faculty, and the trustees stepped 
in. They used the occasion to 
abolish two aspects of student 
life that had been worrying them 
for some time. The first was 
hazing; the second was a trend 
among student social clubs to re- 
semble fraternities and sororities. 
Lovett had opposed fraternity- 
like associations from the begin- 
ning, preferring instead that the 
residential halls themselves take 
over club functions and become 
similar to the English college sys- 
tem. The university's catalog em- 
phasized that the campus was a 

democratic one, with student or- 
ganizations such as the Student 
Association, scholarly societies, 
and the YMCA and YWCA open 
to all. The new clubs were defi- 
nitely not open to all, and there 
was a certain amount of dissatis- 
faction on campus with them, a 
discontent manifest in student 
elections and the operation of the 
Student Council. Caldwell re- 
ported that students and many 
alumni believed that the clubs 
interfered with the unity and de- 
mocracy of Rice life. He urged 
their abolition before they be- 
came strongly entrenched. The 
dean also recommended that the 
Institute rid itself of hazing. He 
had hoped to extinguish it by a 
gradual process of persuasion and 
education but found that the pro- 
cess was entirely too slow and 
dangerous. Accordingly, the fac- 
ulty met in June and passed reso- 
lutions against the two distaste- 
ful practices, and the trustees 

On June 8, 1922, at a meeting 
with students in the physics am- 
phitheater, the new policies were 

/. There shall be no social clubs, 
local, fraternity, or sorority. 
II. There shall be no hazing. 

Although current students 
would not be required to sign a 
pledge to honor these resolu- 
tions, all future matriculating 
students would. Stressing democ- 
racy and efficiency in student 
self-government and the charac- 
ter of the university, the state- 
ment called upon all members of 
Rice to observe the resolutions 

There was one last night of 
hazing, set to end at midnight, 
and the sophomores made certain 
that the freshmen remembered 
the experience. Freshman room- 
mates Fred Stancliff and Wilson 
La Rue tried to barricade them- 
selves into 210 West Hall, but the 
sophomores managed to come in 
through the window at five min- 
utes to twelve. At that point, 
Stancliff remembers, "all hell 
broke loose."" 

When school opened the fol- 
lowing autumn, Caldwell clar- 
ified the bans. To the board and 
the faculty, hazing meant physi- 
cal punishment, not the wearing 
of special outfits or the other 
harmless customs that had be- 
come part of the system. Those 
traditions would be allowed to re- 
main. Clubs were another mat- 
ter. The literary societies, EBLS 
and PALS, could continue to 
meet. (There was already a so- 
cial-club feeling about the so- 
cieties; but presumably their 
"literary" purpose was still in op- 
eration, and they did raise money 
for scholarships.) The others 
were out; the administration 
wanted the Institute to be pre- 
eminently democratic, with un- 
divided interests. Caldwell said 
that there were only four funda- 
mental laws at Rice: reasonable 
quiet and order in the residential 
halls, no cheating, no hazing, and 
no clubs." 

For the most part, students ac- 
cepted the club ban with good 
grace. Since literary societies 
were allowed, two men's so- 
cieties — the Owl Debating Club 
and the Riceonian — were resur- 
rected, and a new women's club. 


The 1920s 

the Owen Wister Literary Society 
(OWLS), was formed. On the 
question of hazing, however, stu- 
dent reaction was mixed. On one 
hand, opposition to hazing had 
been growing, and chiss organiza- 
tions had moved against the prac- 
tice in previous years. On the 
other hand, some upperclassmen 
worried that freshman class spirit 
would suffer. Others resented in- 
terference from the administra- 
tion; they thought that this was 
an instance in which administra- 
tion interests and student inter- 
ests differed. To foster freshman 
spirit, upperclassmen resolved to 
enforce observance of freshman 
"traditions," using social ostra- 
cism and expulsion from the Stu- 
dent Association as punishment 
for transgressions. Slimes, both 
men and women, were told to 
come in costume on certain days, 
and mothball races were once 
again held in the quadrangle. 
Sensing the moral backing of the 
administration, however, fresh- 
men disobeyed and disregarded 
the rules. To enforce the regula- 
tions, sophomores had only two 
tools: ostracism or eviction from 
the dormitory. Ostracism was dif- 
ficult to carry out, and suspen- 
sion from the dormitory was 
almost the equivalent of a mone- 
tary fine. Nothing was settled 
during the first year of the ban on 
physical coercion, but the dean 
was satisfied with the result.'^ 

In September 1923 "slime reg- 
ulations" were published again 
for freshmen to follow, but en- 
forcement remained difficult. In 
November the dean reported to 
the faculty that the hazing situa- 
tion was satisfactory. That situa- 

tion did not last long, because the 
following spring sophomores 
were once more battling fresh- 
men as the Slime Ball approached. 
They also tried to kidnap the 
freshman class president. It ap- 
pears that there was no formal 
action to curb the annual battles 
connected with the Slime Ball 
until Coach Heisman asked in 

1926 for its cancellation because 
players' grades had declined dur- 
ing the uproar. The Student 
Council obliged and cancelled 
the freshman dance, but warfare 
was transferred to the Sophomore 
Ball when freshmen tried to kid- 
nap the sophomore president. In 

1927 freshmen received permis- 
sion to reinstate their dance, on 
the condition that the Student 
Council draw up rules and police 
the affair; the freshman president 

was once again fair game for 

Once the controversy over the 
dances diminished, the Slime 
Parade came under attack. In 
this parade, which ended in 
a pep rally at the Rice Hotel, 
sophomores herded freshmen 
down Main Street with the aid of 
brooms, belts, and other spurs to 
movement. In 1927 the trustees 
suggested to the president and 
dean that something be done to 
correct these "objectionable pa- 
rades," and the following year 
they abolished the Slime Parade 
themselves. The Thresher sup- 
ported their action, commenting 
that in spite of the pledge, soph- 
omores still hazed freshmen in 
the old manner; the editor called 
for abolition of the "vicious 
forms" of hazing. During 1928 

9S. The first Slime IFreshmanI Nif^htsi-int Pdrade. Fall 1921. 

The 1920s 

and 1929, several students were 
expelled for hazing, and Cald- 
well optimistically stated that 
there would soon be no more 
hazing at the Institute. But haz- 
ing passed with the students into 
the 1930s."'' 

Alumni Activities and 
National Associations 

By 1920 the trustees had con- 
ferred approximately 160 degrees 
on Rice students. That November 
at Thanksgiving homecoming ac- 
tivities, the former students orga- 
nized into the Association of 
Rice Alumni. Their first presi- 

dent was Ervin Kalb 'n. Alumni 
continued to meet at each home- 
coming, and their numbers grew 
as more students graduated each 
year. In 1929 the association 
began to collect funds for an 
alumni memorial building of of- 
fices and classrooms, to be dedi- 
cated to the memory of William 
Marsh Rice and to be located 
across the quadrangle from the 
Physics Building.'^ 

One group of alumni who 
wanted to join a national organi- 
zation found to their consterna- 
tion that Rice did not meet its 
criteria. Although the Rice Insti- 
tute was a provisional member of 
the American Association of 

University Women from 1922 to 
1927 and Rice graduates were ac- 
cepted as members during that 
period, the association refused 
regular membership to Rice and 
would not accept Rice graduates 
as members after that time. The 
Institute could not meet mem- 
bership requirements for a cer- 
tain number of women on the 
faculty and Board of Trustees, for 
a women's dormitory, for physi- 
cal education for women, and for 
a dean of women with faculty 

Although Rice could not sat- 
isfy AAUW requirements, it did 
obtain membership in two other 
organizations of national stature. 

96. Installation ul Phi Bt'to Kuppu. Bciii Clu 

larch 2, 1929. 


The 1 920s 

In 1927 a chapter of Phi Lambda 
Upsilon, an honorary chemistry 
fraternity, was founded on cam- 
pus. More important to the presi- 
dent, perhaps, was affiUation 
with Phi Beta Kappa. Lovett be- 
gan apphcation for a charter for 
the second chapter in Texas (the 
University of Texas had Alpha 
Chapter) in 1921. At that time 
many of the organization's sena- 
tors, who voted on membership, 
believed that the institution was 
too new; more time should be 
given for the development of its 
characteristics. In 1922 Oscar M. 
Voorhees, secretary of Phi Beta 
Kappa, wrote to Lovett, 

There was no question in the 
minds of the Senate of the future 

of Rice Institute. There was a 
question as to whether with its 
changed ideals the present name 
is appropriate. Phi Beta Kappa 
has never entered any institution 
that does not bear the name of 
College or University. I presume 
this matter has had your consid- 
eration, and that developments 
in the future will follow the 
course that is consistent from 
the point of view of the Trustees 
and Faculty. 

The organization had denied a 
charter to the Massachusetts In- 
stitute of Technology partly on 
the same grounds a few years 
earlier. However, even without 
changing its name, the Rice Insti- 
tute was accepted for member- 

ship in 192H. Beta Chapter of Phi 
Beta Kappa was installed on 
March i, 1929. Dr. Henry Osborn 
Taylor, an eminent medieval his- 
torian, delivered the inaugural 

President Lovett left the 1920s 
worried about problems ranging 
from finances to hazing, but he 
could be content that a jury of 
Rice's scholarly peers considered 
the Institute good enough and 
broadly enough based to merit a 
chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. His as- 
pirations to university status had 
borne fruit.'" 


Survival through the Depression: 

The 1930s 

whether Rice would attain gen- 
eral recognition of the university 
status envisaged by President 
Lovett or fall to the rank of a pri- 
marily technical institute be- 
came almost an irrelevant issue 
m the 1930s. Survival was its 
main concern during the Great 
Depression. The controllers of 
Rice's destiny, the Board of Trust- 
ees, had changed somewhat over 
the years. From the 1912 board 
there remained Captain James 
Baker, President Lovett, William 
M. Rice, Jr., and Benjamin B. 
Rice. To these had been added 
John T. Scott in 191 3 as Emanuel 
Raphael's successor. New in the 
1920s were Edward A. Peden, 
chairman of Peden Iron and Steel, 
and cotton factor and wholesale 
grocer Alexander S. Cleveland, 
who replaced James E. McAshan 
and Cesar M. Lombardi in 1922. 
When Peden died in 1934, the 
board elected Humble Oil founder 
Robert L. Blaffer to succeed him. 
Under Baker's chairmanship, this 
board remained a conservative 
group of men, rightly worried 

about the effect of the depression 
on Rice's income. 

Until 1947 all members of the 
Board of Trustees were actively 
engaged in managing the busi- 
ness affairs of the Rice Institute 
and its endowment. The assistant 
secretary to the board handled in- 
vestments on orders from the 
board and accounted to the board 
for all income and expenditures. 
The board as a whole made most 
of the decisions, both large and 
small, that involved money. The 
president of the university, on the 
other hand, was in charge of edu- 
cational matters, which included 
preparation of each year's budget. 
The board approved that budget 
in detail, line by line, and no 
member of the university's ad- 
ministrative staff was authorized 
to approve any expenditure not 
specifically covered in the item- 
ized budget. All revisions re- 
quired board approval. The bursar 
on campus, J. T McCants, was 
the purchasing agent, cashier, 
and supervisor of expenditures, 
as well as overseer of the auxil- 

iary income-producing enter- 
prises, such as dormitories. As 
the institution had grown, sepa- 
rate accounts for its various ac- 
tivities and needs had been added 
haphazardly to the original ac- 
counting structure. The result 
was that one person might han- 
dle several unrelated functions, 
or a department's account might 
be carried on the books of an of- 
fice that was not the most effi- 
cient for supervising that particu- 
lar activity. Some accounts were 
carried on the books of the Rice 
Institute, while others were inde- 
pendent of the president or even 
of the assistant secretary to the 
board. For example, the business 
manager of athletics came di- 
rectly under the authority of 
the board and worked through 
channels that excluded the presi- 
dent and the assistant secretary, 
although the latter as comptrol- 
ler of the Athletic Association 
could review its budget. The 
board faced the depression with 
a complex financial organiza- 
tion that had grown ad hoc 

The ly^^os 

with the Institute rather than 
having heen phmned for efficient 

A Move to Reduce Expenses 

By March ly^i A. B. Cohn, as- 
sistant secretary to the board, 
was predicting dire consequences 
if expenditures were not reduced. 
He estimated that there would be 
a reduction in gross income from 
the endowment from $723,000 to 
$681,000 and that that amount 
would not be sufficient to cover 
both depreciation and budget ex- 
penditures. (As with a commer- 
cial enterprise, the board had 
established a depreciation reserve 
account that either served as a 
building fund or added to the en- 
dowment.) Furthermore, Cohn 
said, the bond market, in which 
the Institute had invested some 
$4 million, was unstable. Some 
South American bonds had de- 
faulted on their interest pay- 
ments of $167,500, and certain 
other bonds were especially weak. 
Securities continued to depre- 
ciate in value, and defaults on 
loans secured by real estate meant 
loss of interest income as well as 
additional obligations for Rice in 
the form of taxes on foreclosed 
property. Estimated shrinkage in 
the market value of the bonds 
and notes amounted to $978,000, 
a staggering sum in those days. In 
light of this bleak information, 
chairman Baker wrote to Presi- 
dent Lovett, calling his attention 
to this situation and asking him 
to provide a statement of the 
economies and reductions in ex- 
penses that might be made with- 

out impairing educational effi- 
ciency. Baker also pointed out 
that some of the trustees were 
thinking of a "substantial reduc- 
tion" in the number of students 
admitted and of reductions both 
in numbers of faculty and in the 
salaries paid them.' 

When the proposed budget for 
1932-33 reached the board, 
however, it was larger than that 
of the previous year, which had 
amounted to $592,000. The new 
budget called for expenditures of 
approximately $635,000, includ- 
ing construction of an addition to 
the Field Fiouse. Faced with ris- 
ing costs and declining income, 
the board voted unanimously in 
Lovett's absence at its lune 24, 
1932, meeting to reduce all sal- 
aries by ten percent. The board's 
resolution pointed to the "dis- 
tressing economic conditions 
existing throughout the world" 
as the reason and expressed 
the hope that those affected 
would accept the reduction "in 
a spirit of hearty cooperation 
with the purpose sought to be 

Three days later the board met 
again, this time with Lovett pres- 
ent. Fie offered a suggestion from 
some members of the faculty that 
married men receiving less than 
$3,750 annually be exempted 
from the reduction. The trustees 
did not agree to exempt any 
members of the faculty com- 
pletely from the austerity mea- 
sures but did vote a reduction for 
these men of only five percent. 
Professor Wilson had suggested 
to President Lovett earlier that 
the faculty might cooperate more 
willingly in measures of econ- 

omy if they were given a clear 
picture of the financial situation 
of the Institute; possibly for that 
reason, Baker wrote a letter to 
Lovett explaining the need for 
the reductions. The tone of his 
letter indicates that it was de- 
signed for persons other than the 
president; it included a statement 
of revenues, expenses, and net in- 
come for the past ten years, even 
though Lovett was well aware of 
this information." 

The amended budget reduced 
expenditures by almost $147,000. 
Swept away were any appropria- 
tions for new construction and 
one-third of the amount normally 
allocated for new equipment and 
furniture. The library budget was 
cut by one-fourth and the Ath- 
letic Department by a third. Sal- 
aries were lowered the required 
percentages, and some assistant- 
ships and fellowships were elimi- 
nated entirely. The trustees ap- 
proved a final budget of $488,000." 

Because of the agreement un- 
der which he had returned to 
Rice from Scotland, Flarold A. 
Wilson's salary was considered 
separately from other faculty 
compensation. The Institute had 
guaranteed him $8,000 a year, 
and the trustees believed that 
they could not reduce that amount 
by unilateral action. When ap- 
proached to cooperate with them, 
Wilson was quite prepared to do 
so, though in a manner some- 
what different from what the 
trustees might have expected. He 
offered to contribute ten percent 
of his salary to the physics de- 
partment, with the understand- 
ing that his salary would be paid 
in full and that no change would 

The 1930s 

be made in his agreement with 
the Institute. The trustees agreed 
to his proposal." 

To reduce costs further, the 
trustees also moved to decrease 
the number of students. The In- 
stitute had enrolled a record 
number of 1,461 students for the 
year 1931-32, including a fresh- 
man class of 485. For 1932-33 
the trustees declared that the 
total number of new students in 
all categories was to be held to 
400 and that the number of out- 
of-state students newly admitted 
was not to exceed 25. The board 
considered a tuition charge for 
non-Texans but did not go be- 
yond discussion of the idea. That 
fall only 403 freshmen were ad- 
mitted; enrollment fell to 1,372 
(930 men and 442 women). ^ 

Costs were a critical factor in 
other board decisions regarding 
students. First, the registration 
fee assessed of all students was 
raised in 1932 from ten dollars 
to twenty-five dollars. Then in 
1933, when vacancies in the resi- 
dential halls rose to forty percent, 
Dean Caldwell and bursar John T 
McCants devised a remedy that 
the board adopted. Every male 
student was required to spend at 
least one year in residence on 
campus. The board felt that this 
arrangement would promote the 
students' welfare, increase a feel- 
ing of solidarity in college life, 
and fill the halls. Each lease on a 
room would run the full aca- 
demic year at a cost of ninety 
dollars for the year; henceforth 
no one would be allowed to move 
out at midterm. This regulation 
was to apply to Houstonians as 
well as to out-of-town students. 

although financial hardship would 
be accepted as a valid reason to 
postpone the period of residence. 
Many men had moved out of the 
dorms in previous years when 
the Hall Committee cracked 
down on noise, while others 
moved out to evade distractions 
from study. The new plan set up 
a committee, which included the 
dean, "for the maintenance of 
conditions favorable to study." To 
promote those conditions even 
more forcefully, no radios were 
permitted except in the seniors' 
dining room, fake Hess (for whom 
Rice's tennis stadium is named), 
chairman of the committee, said 
that the group would be very ac- 
tive because members would be 
paid for their work with free rent, 
and the only cost for dorm living 
would be board, about a dollar a 
day." This arrangement was an at- 
tractive inducement for men to 
join the committee in depression 

Another revenue-raising idea 
involved the Athletic Associa- 
tion, the Student Association, 
and a variety of events and orga- 
nizations lumped together as 
"student activities." Until 1933 
the Student Association had been 
a voluntary organization. Stu- 
dents who joined paid $18 per 
year in support of the Student 
Association, the Honor Council, 
and the student publications; for 
this payment they received free 
admission to all Rice athletic 
contests in Houston, the weekly 
Thresher, and the Campanile. 
In May 1933 the student body 
adopted a resolution favoring 
compulsory membership in the 
Student Association and a blan- 

ket tax on each student. The Stu- 
dent Council requested that the 
trustees assess and levy the tax 
and provide for its collection. 
Captain Baker had already been 
considering such a fee as a way to 
increase athletic funds, so the 
trustees approved the tax, to be 
collected beginning the following 
fall. The blanket tax amounted to 
$8. 40, with the Athletic Associa- 
tion receiving half, the Cam- 
panile $2.50, and various other 
publications and organizations 
lesser amounts." 

Additional Revenues 

Rice's financial picture looked a 
bit brighter when Eugene L. 
Bender, a retired Houston busi- 
nessman, builder, and lumber- 
man, died in 1934 and left 
$200,000 to the Institute. This 
bequest came as a pleasant sur- 
prise to the Rice trustees, since 
Bender had had no official con- 
nection with the school in the 
past, although many Rice people 
had stayed at the Hotel Bender. 
The money would not be avail- 
able until the will had been pro- 
bated, and as a result the Insti- 
tute did not actually receive the 
bequest until 1938. The trustees 
discussed using the money for a 
badly needed library since the 
university owned more than 
120,000 volumes but had no sin- 
gle location for them. However, 
the Bender bequest was not fi- 
nally used until 1947, when it 
was spent to construct the Sci- 
ence Reading Room (now the 
Reference Room) of the new Fon- 
dren Library." 

The ly^os 

Although income continued to 
fluctuate and economic condi- 
tions did not improve markedly, 
the trustees decided in 19 ■56, at 
the urging of President Lovett, 
that faculty salaries should be re- 
stored to their former levels. 
From 1933 to 1936, the budget 
decreased every year. In 1934 
net excess revenue after depre- 
ciation had reached a low point 
of Si 6,600, but by 1936 it had 
climbed to over $144,000. Only a 
little more than $21,000 was 
needed to restore the predepres- 
sion salaries of the grateful 
faculty members. The new bud- 
get for 1936-37 amounted to 

More good news came in De- 
cember 1936, when trustee Wil- 
liam M. Rice, jr., gave 10,000 
shares of stock in the Reed Roller 
Bit Company to the endowment 
fund. The stock was estimated to 
have a value of $330,000 and to 
have an annual income of $8,000 
to $12,000. This gift cheered 
James Baker considerably. "This 
will certainly make it a merry 
Christmas for Rice," he said in a 
newspaper interview. "It is pri- 
marily through the generosity 
of such men as Mr. Rice that we 
are able to look forward to the 
school's future with a great deal 
of pleasure and confidence."" 

Two years later the Rice Insti- 
tute received another substantial 
gift. This one was estimated to be 
$100,000 and was part of the es- 
tate of Arthur B. Cohn. Cohn had 
been secretary to the founder, 
William M. Rice, and then as- 
sistant secretary to the board and 
business manager for the Insti- 
tute from Its establishment until 

1936. (In 1936 C. A. Dwyer be- 
came assistant secretary and 
business manager in Cohn's 
place.) Although very encourag- 
ing, such gifts were not enough 
to allow for real expansion, and 
in 1938 Baker again considered a 
tuition charge for out-of-state 
students. Once more, nothing 
came of the proposal." 

Changes in the Faculty 

As there were some changes in 
membership on the board during 
the thirties, there were also 
changes in the administration 
and faculty. Dean Robert G. Cald- 
well left in 1933 to become am- 
bassador to Portugal under Presi- 
dent Franklin D. Roosevelt. At 
first Lee M. Sharrar, who had 
been instructor of economics and 
Caldwell's right-hand man, was 
made acting dean; but before 
classes started that fall President 
Lovett appointed Harry B. Weiser 
to be dean of the Institute. Weiser, 
a professor of chemistry, had 
been on the faculty since 191 5 
and was known for his work with 
colloids. Believing that "young- 
sters are inherently reasonable," 
Weiser anticipated few problems 
that could not be resolved through 
a better understanding of the stu- 
dents and their difficulties. In 
1 9 3 1 Sara Stratford, adviser to 
women from i9i4to 1931, died; 
her daughter, Mary Jane Torrens, 
class of 191 8, took her place but 
stayed only through the spring 
and summer. In October 193 1 
Sarah Lane '19, assistant li- 
brarian, was named to the post, 
somewhat to her surprise. The 

97. Sarah Lane '19 was assistant 
librarian of the Institute and became 
the second adviser to women in 

administration operated as it al- 
ways had, however; the new 
members made no significant 

In fact, from the faculty point 
of view the Institute must have 
been rather quiet during the 
1930s. Promotions were almost 
nonexistent, since there was lit- 
tle or no money for salary raises; 
some men remained assistant 
professors for years. For several 
faculty members, "the spirit of 
the whole institution was one of 

The 1930s 


hand, Harold Wilson complained 
to Lovett about the infrequency 
of faculty meetings, which were 
being held only once a year to 
vote on candidates for graduation. 
He thought it might be desirable 
to hold four or five meetings a 
year and for Lovett to make some 
statement at the meetings about 
policy, future prospects, and the 
Institute's finances. "This is done 
in other universities," he wrote, 
"and I believe it is valuable be- 
cause it promotes the idea among 
members of the faculty that they 
are a permanent part of the in- 
stitution and that their coopera- 
tion in all matters pertaining 
to its welfare is regarded as of 
value. In many universities new 
schemes of organization, teach- 
ing, and athletics are being tried 
out and such matters might well 
be considered here. It seems de- 
sirable to do something to wake 
the place up a bit." His sugges- 
tions, however, do not seem to 
have been adopted.'^ 

When salary cuts were an- 
nounced in 1932, the news awak- 
ened the faculty, but not quite as 
Wilson had envisioned. It seems 
that no one except the depart- 
ment heads had known what any 
other faculty member made; 
when somehow the facts leaked 
out, some professors were upset 
at the inequities in compensa- 
tion. It was rumored that the sal- 
ary cut had convinced Griffith C. 
Evans, head of the mathematics 
department, to resign, because he 
thought the reduction showed 
that the board was not interested 
in building a university. In 1933 
Evans accepted an offer from the 
University of California, Berke- 

ley. Berkeley had been wooing 
Evans for years, as had Harvard 
and a number of other notable in- 
stitutions, but he had remained 
at Rice. Whatever the real reason 
for Evans's departure in 1933, his 
leaving was a blow to the depart- 
ment. It was not until 1938 that 
Hubert Bray was promoted to 
professor and formally named 
chairman of the department, al- 
though he was in charge de facto 
from the time Evans left." 

Although some of the trustees 
wanted to reduce the number of 
faculty members as well as their 
salaries. President Lovett tried to 
keep as many people as he could. 
In 1934, however, he had to in- 
form four instructors that their 
appointments would not be re- 
newed because of the financial 
situation. Frederic W. Browne and 
Charles L. Browne, eight- and 
fourteen-year veteran teachers of 
architecture, along with Charles 
H. Dix, a five-year member of the 
mathematics faculty, and Joseph 
R. Shannon, a recent temporary 
appointment in economics, left 
the Institute that summer. For 
various reasons — other offers, the 
need for more money — some oth- 
ers left as well, so that the num- 
ber of faculty members dropped 
from seventy-three in 1930 to 
sixty-five in 1934 to fifty-eight 
in 1938. After that the number 
climbed to sixty-four in 1940. In 
1935 Rice lost another revered 
member of its faculty, but not for 
financial reasons. Much-loved 
English professor Stockton Axson 
died at the age of sixty-eight after 
a long illness.'^ 

In spite of the depression, there 
were some additions to the fac- 

ulty during the 1930s. Some of 
the new men had been hired be- 
fore the salary cut, some replaced 
those who left, and a few came 
late in the decade specifically in 
response to the increased num- 
bers of students who enrolled in 
engineering and because of in- 
creased accrediting requirements 
in that field. Among those who 
made their first appearance on 
the Institute faculty during the 
1930s were Tom Bonner (for 
whom Bonner Nuclear Lab is 
named) in physics, Floyd E. Ul- 
rich in math, George Holmes 
Richter in chemistry, Carl R. 
Wischmeyer in electrical engi- 
neering, Stayton Nunn in archi- 
tecture, J. D. Thomas and Carroll 
Camden in English, Lynn M. 
Case and David M. Potter in his- 
tory and Joseph L. Battista m 
Spanish. Joseph I. Davies, who 
had been in the biology labora- 
tory at Rice almost since the 
opening, received his Ph.D. m 
1937 and in 1940 became an in- 
structor in biology, beginning a 
legendary twenty-five-year career 
as one of the Institute's most 
flamboyant lecturers and inspir- 
ing teachers. 

The Question of Tenure 

Nonrenewal of appointments 
inevitably introduced the ques- 
tion of academic tenure. Since 
the founding of the university, 
no faculty member had been 
employed for any definite time 
longer than a year, except head 
football coaches like John W. 
Heisman, who had a five-year 
contract, and the two English- 


The ly^os 

men Daniell and Huxley, who 
had been given three-year con- 
tracts early in the history of the 
Institute. In the absence of a for- 
mal system, faculty members 
seem to have assumed that as 
long as they did their jobs, their 
appointments would be con- 
tinued. The custom followed at 
most institutions of higher learn- 
ing was that the appointment of a 
full professor contuiued for life if 
the length of employment was 
not specifically stated, or for as 
long as the professor wished to 
remain at the institution and was 
competent to discharge his pro- 
fessional duties. This practice did 
not apply to assistant professors 
or instructors. A tacit assump- 
tion of tenure for full professors 
did not, however, appeal to the 
trustees, since it limited their 
freedom of action in reducing the 
number of faculty members, es- 
pecially at the upper levels. 

Aware of a difference of opin- 
ion regarding tenure. President 
Lovett wrote to several colleges 
and universities around the coun- 
try in 1935 asking about their 
policies on the issue. Whatever 
their responses may have been, 
the trustees did not immediately 
state a formal position, probably 
because financial pressure had 
eased and they were able to re- 
store salaries and allay anxieties 
concerning reductions in teach- 
ing staff. It was 1942 before the 
bylaws of the Institute's board 
were amended to state that all of- 
ficers, faculty members, and em- 
ployees were to be regarded as 
receiving annual appointments; 
no one was to be employed for a 

period longer than twelve months 
without express authority from 
the board. It appears that no for- 
mal review procedure was estab- 
lished and that reappointment 
was usually automatic; none- 
theless, the board had the ex- 
press power to remove even full 

Because members of the fac- 
ulty met as a group so seldom 
and were not encouraged to dis- 
cuss the university's situation 
when they did meet, curricular 
changes were few in the 1930s. 
The Department of Physical Edu- 
cation survived its five-year trial 
period and was continued; sev- 
enteen Bachelor of Science de- 
grees in physical education were 
awarded at the 1933 commence- 
ment. In 1934 Dean Weiser raised 
the possibility of requiring a 
nineteen- or twenty-course sched- 
ule for the B.A. general curricu- 
lum instead of the eighteen- 
course schedule then required. 
Most 300- and 400-level courses 
seemed to require no more work 
than the average 100- and 200- 
level courses; and since there was 
a shortage of genuine "advanced" 
courses, Weiser thought it advis- 
able to require another course 
from juniors and possibly from 
seniors. The policy was not 
changed, however, and it appears 
that the faculty never formally 
considered it. An innovation was 
added to the English require- 
ments in 1937: a spelling test, 
which students had to pass in or- 
der to graduate.'" 

Some Memorable Professors 

All was not gloom on campus in 
the 1930s, of course. Professors 
continued to have their idio- 
syncrasies. Edgar H. Altenburg 
liked to be greeted with applause 
when he appeared in "Bugs 100"; 
but during a snowfall in 1932, it 
was snowballs, not applause, that 
opened — and quickly closed — the 
class. During that same snow- 
fall, John Slaughter postponed a 
scheduled sociology examination. 
He declared that he would not be 
coerced but that a student com- 
mittee's kind request for can- 
cellation, combined with the 
coldness of the amphitheater 
(doubtless because of snow left 
from the earlier bombardment in 
biology class), had convinced him 
to reschedule the exam for the 
following Monday. 

Teachers continued to take roll 
before each class, although few 
resorted to opera glasses to read 
the numbers on the seats at the 
back of the physics amphitheater, 
as Claude Heaps did. L. V. Uhrig, 
civil engineering instructor, 
developed his own teaching de- 
vice. In September he would give 
classes that had returned in a 
continuing subject the same ex- 
amination that they had taken 
the previous June; some grades 
were rather embarrassing. 

Frank Pattie employed a teach- 
ing practice that discomfited 
many students. His psychology 
class never knew when to expect 
true-false examinations. Seem- 
ingly designed to weed out those 
who thought that his class would 
be a snap, the questions were 

The 1930s 

hypothetical, convoluted, and 
"strange." According to one vic- 
tim, coins could be heard drop- 
ping throughout the amphi- 
theater as students employed a 
time-honored method for deci- 
sion in the face of ignorance. Pat- 
tie's demonstrations of the uses 
and art of hypnotism, however, 
made putting up with the exams 
worthwhile. The professor's ad- 
monitions of the dangers inher- 
ent in amateur experimentation 
seem to have been heeded; in one 
graphic exhibition of hypnotic 
suggestion for violence, the hyp- 
notized person actually hit some- 
one. In spite of the demonstra- 
tions, there were those who 
scoffed at hypnotism and spoke 
of the dubious value of this "so- 
called science." '° 

In 1934 a prominent Galves- 
tonian complained to the island's 
League of Women Voters that 
their scheduled speaker. Rice's 
Radoslav Tsanoff, would be 
speaking "just plain commu- 
nism, pure and simple." The phi- 
losophy professor laughed and 
declined to make a statement, 
saying only, "If anybody pre- 
sumes to know the contents of 
an address not delivered, he is en- 
titled to his opinion." The times 
had changed since Lyford Ed- 
wards had given his lecture m 
191 8, but the potential for an- 
other such affair arose when 
Heinrich Meyer of the German 
department wrote a letter to the 
Houston Press in 1938 defending 
recent German actions on the 
Continent. One reader objected 
privately to the board and the 
president, but no public issue 

was made of the matter or of 
Meyer's views. That would come 

More Visiting Lecturers 

As in earlier years, the Institute 
continued to bring prominent 
scholars to campus to speak. The 
1930s saw such well-known fig- 
ures as the mathematician and 
physicist T. Levi-Civita from the 
University of Rome, Samuel Eliot 
Morison, the prominent historian 
from Harvard, biologist Julian 
Huxley (then at the Royal Insti- 
tute in London), and Carlos Del- 
gado de Carvalho, a professor of 
sociology at the Colegio Pedro II 
in Rio de Janeiro and visiting 
Carnegie Professor at the Insti- 
tute under the auspices of the 
Carnegie Endowment for Interna- 
tional Peace. George Lyman Kit- 
tredge, internationally known as 
a leading authority on Chaucer, 
the English ballads, and Shake- 
speare, came after his retirement 
from Harvard to lecture and to 
visit his former student. Rice En- 
glish professor Alan McKillop. 
McKillop told his students that 
Kittredge did not have a Ph.D. de- 
gree. After all, who was qualified 
to examine him- 

The French Mission Nationale 
Franqaise Cavalier de la Salle 
came to Houston in 1937 for the 
250th anniversary of explorer La 
Salle's death in Texas. The mem- 
bers of the mission were Rene 
Maurier, Mme St. Rene Tail- 
landier. Prince Achille Murat, 
Marcelle Tinagre, and Fortunat 

In 1938 James W. Rockwell 
founded the Rockwell lectureship 
in memory of his father, James 
M. Rockwell, a Houston lumber- 
man. These lectures on religious 
subjects were inaugurated by Sir 
Robert Falconer, the former presi- 
dent of the University of To- 
ronto.'' They continue today. 

Only a Few Building Projects 

Straitened economic circum- 
stances in the thirties meant that 
there was little construction 
on campus during that decade. 
There were additions to the Field 
House and new football stands at 
the stadium, but the only other 
large construction project was for 
scientific research. In 1937 Rice 
physicists began building a 2.5- 
million-volt atom bombardment 
machine to study the nucleus of 
the atom. The frame building 
constructed to house it had a 
heavy concrete floor and a con- 
crete wall twelve inches thick 
to separate operators from the 

One other construction project 
was completed during the dec- 
ade. When William M. Rice, the 
founder, died, his remains had 
been cremated and the ashes kept 
in the trustees' vault. In 1922 a 
committee consisting of Presi- 
dent Lovett, William M. Rice, Jr., 
and Benjamin B. Rice began to 
formulate plans for disposition of 
the ashes. This group of men de- 
cided on a monument to be situ- 
ated in the middle of the aca- 
demic quadrangle. The ashes 
would be placed in the monu- 


The u;^os 


98. Unveiling of the statue of the founder, William Marsh Rice, June 8, 1930. Ralph Adams Cram, the 
commencement speaker that year, attended the unveiling (right, with his hands in front of him). 

ment, and above it would be a 
statue of the founder. To sculpt 
the likeness of William Marsh 
Rice, the board chose John Angel, 
a well-known artist. On May 22, 
1930, in a fitting ceremony, the 
ashes, a certified copy of the 
certificate of cremation, and a 
statement that Rice was born in 
Massachusetts and had died at 

the age of eighty-four years, six 
months, and nine days were 
interred in the pedestal of the 

Seldom is a statue installed on 
a college campus for long before 
it receives some indignity, and 
the founder's statue was no ex- 
ception. Hazing had returned to 
the Rice campus by 1932 — if in- 

deed it had ever been missing — 
and the sophomores sent some 
freshmen out to "clean and shave" 
the statue. The Houston news- 
papers reported the story of the 
prank, whereupon a member of 
the Rice family took offense at 
what he called the disrespect 
shown the "tomb." The soph- 
omores, the Thresher, and others 

The 1930s 

denied knowing that the monu- 
ment contained the founder's 
ashes, because there had been no 
pubUcity of the fact; in the furor 
that followed, sophomore presi- 
dent James H. Scott resigned 
his office. (Roberta Woods, vice- 
president of the class, assumed 
the office when Scott vacated it 
and became the first female class 
president in Institute history.) 
Being known as a tomb or not, 
the statue has not escaped the at- 
tention of other pranksters. Over 
the years, it has been subjected to 
innumerable paintings (by Aggies 
and others) and has sported Hal- 
loween pumpkins on its head and 
itinerant neckties around its 

Hazing and Other 
Student Activities 

Nor did hazing come to a halt 
because of this incident. Dean 
Weiser was inclined to permit 
the milder forms of hazing, which 
consisted of the traditional moth- 
ball race, painted freshmen, and 
slime-drawn water-cart rides. 
Slimes and "slimesses" had to 
wear certain costumes, including 
a beanie for everyone, a green tie 
and red suspenders for the men, 
and a pinafore for the women; 
and all freshmen had to follow 
certain rules about walking on 
the grass and showing proper re- 
spect for upperclassmen. The 
Slime Parade culminated down- 
town in the usual pep rally at the 
intersection of Main Street and 
Texas Avenue. Despite the no- 
hazing pledge and warnings by 
the dean, however, certain out- 

lawed forms of the practice also 
continued. Broomings, Bayou 100 
(tossing freshmen into the "Blue 
Danube"), Forestry 100, and the 
like went on as before, although 
with a little more circumspec- 
tion. A freshman's broken ankle 
in 1939 caused the dean to recon- 
sider the situation, and in 1940 
Weiser banned hazing again. The 
Slime Parade was allowed to con- 
tinue but without paint or pa- 
jamas, signs or costumes. The 
ban remained in effect through 
1 94 1; when World War II be- 
gan almost all the men on cam- 
pus either had been drafted or 
had joined the Naval ROTC, and 
hazing came to a halt for the 

Hazing was not all that kept 
students busy in the 1930s; in 
fact, it was only a small part of 
life on campus. On the academic 
side, two national honor societies 
joined the already established 
chapters of Phi Beta Kappa and 
Phi Lambda Upsilon. In 1930 Pi 
Delta Phi, the honorary society 
for students of French, approved a 
chapter for Rice, and in 1938 a 
chapter of Tau Beta Pi was estab- 
lished for engineers. The engi- 
neers had had to operate their 
own organization (the Rice En- 
gineophyte Society) for two years 
before the national Tau Beta 
Pi association granted them a 

Extracurricular activities were 
numerous. The May Fete was 
still a popular spring occasion, 
but it erupted into controversy 
in 1933. Up to that time, only 
women had voted in the elec- 
tions for queen and members of 
the court, and the literary so- 

cieties had virtually controlled 
the outcome by bloc voting. A 
number of independents — women 
without literary affiliations — 
challenged the societies in the 
election of 1933 and elected 
about half the court. In the heat 
of the campaign, there was much 
rhetoric about the evil of exclu- 
sive clubs and the need for de- 
mocracy. The Houston Chronicle 
even entered the fray with an edi- 
torial deploring the factionalism 
on campus. The result seems to 
have been that men were also al- 
lowed to vote for the May Fete 
court; after another challenge 
by independents in the class 
elections that year, the campus 
calmed down for a while. 

In 1936 the May Fete again be- 
came the object of controversy 
when the queen elected was 
Bowe Davis Hewitt, a married 
woman who refused to resign her 
position on the grounds that the 
eligibility rules did not preclude 
married women. The Women's 
Council, in charge of the event, 
changed the rules for the next 
year. In 1940 a male student, f. P. 
Miller, ran for May Fete queen, 
stating that he was in the race 
because he was tired of having 
women invade all branches of 
business and competing with 
men. This time the rule that the 
queen must be a senior woman 
was in effect, and the Women's 
Council could reject Miller's 
nomination automatically. Con- 
tests between literary societies 
and independents continued 
at the polls, however, into the 

Nineteen thirty-three must 
have been a vintage year for up- 


The 1 9^ OS 

99. King Jim Nance crowning Mildred O'Riordan queen of the :9?S May Fete before an assembled court of class 

roars, for that fall the Dramatic 
Club precipitated another one. It 
chose the melodrama Uncle 
Tom's Cabin as its autumn pro- 
duction. In indignation, the local 
chapter of the United Daughters 
of the Confederacy protested vig- 
orously against the production of 
a play that they labeled as "unfair 
to the South." The United Con- 
federate Veterans joined in the 

protest, and after considerable 
publicity, the Dramatic Club de- 
cided to change its presentation 
to Rose of the Southland, or. the 
Spirit of Robert E. Lee.'" 

Aside from financial mat- 
ters, the Institute seems to have 
changed little for students of the 
i9^os as compared to those of 
the 1920s. To be sure, there were 
a few differences. In 1937 Jean 

Miriam Slater '38 became the 
first woman to hold the chair of 
the Honor Council. In 1938 a 
larger cooperative store for books 
and supplies opened on the site 
of the old one, the third floor of 
the Administration Building. In 
1937, after fourteen years of ser- 
vice, Lee Chatham resigned as di- 
rector of the Institute band to 
devote more time to his business 

The 1930s 


enterprises. Kit Reid '37, well 
known for his trumpet playing, 
took over Chatham's duties. 
Lee's Owls, the usual band for 
Saturday night dances, had relin- 
quished their place to Pat Quinn's 
Rice Owls Orchestra in 1932. 
Jimmie Scott took over from 
Quinn, and Reid's Night (some- 
times spelled Knight) Owls fol- 
lowed Scott. In 1939, after more 
than seventeen years of publica- 
tion. The Rice Owl, campus hu- 
mor magazine, merged with the 
Rice Alumni News. The new 
magazine was to include factual 
articles and alumni news as well 
as humorous pieces; the old Owl 
had come under attack several 
times for its "low literary stan- 
dards." When the editor of the 
Thresher complained about the 
lack of school spirit in 1938, a 
student answered that under- 
graduates had become more se- 
rious than they were in the late 
1920s. There were still the liter- 
ary society functions, Saturday 
night dances, engineering labs, 
interminable bridge and poker 
games, student elections, cloister 
courses, and the inveterate Rice 
booster, gardener Tony Martino.' 
Sometimes it appeared that the 
school administration worked 
hard to keep Rice from changing. 
From the opening in 1912, Rice 
students had always "dressed" to 
come to school, partly because 
people dressed more formally in 
general and partly because stu- 
dents had traditionally accepted 
the aura of gentility that was en- 
couraged by President Lovett and 
many senior faculty members. In 
April 1936 sophomore William 
losiah Goode showed up on cam- 

pus in Bermuda shorts after the 
dean had already frowned on 
such apparel; a committee com- 
posed of Dean Weiser, bursar Mc- 
Cants, and registrar McCann told 
him that he would be allowed to 
finish the term but would not 
be readmitted in the fall. Accord- 
ing to historian Andrew Forest 
Muir's account, the technical 
charge was insubordination; but 
Goode claimed that he had mis- 
understood the first warning. 
Weiser objected to the shorts, 
Goode said, because Rice wanted 
no new fads on campus. 

Neither, it seemed, did it want 
a female cheerleader. When 1,000 
of the 1,300 students signed a pe- 
tition for one in 1939, the dean 
said that the odds were a thou- 
sand to one against the presi- 
dent's granting the request. Rice 
would not in fact have a woman 
as cheerleader until 1946." 

Athletics — The Golden Age 

But even without a female yell 
leader and after a slow start. Rice 
athletic teams did well in the 
1930s. lack Meagher's football 
team had improved m 1932 so 
much that the conference cham- 
pionship was not out of reach for 
the next season. During February 
examinations in 1933, however, 
eight members of the varsity 
were suspended for violations of 
the Fionor Code and thus were 
ineligible for the 1933 season. 
That fall the Owls won three 
games, lost eight, and placed last 
in the conference. In December 
the board and the Committee on 
Outdoor Sports reorganized the 

Athletic Department and re- 
leased Meagher. In his place as 
both football and basketball head 
coach, they named limmy Kitts, 
who had been Rice's basketball 
coach for a year. Dr. H. O. Nich- 
olas, who had been an instructor 
in chemistry, was made director 
of athletics, and Dr. Gaylord 
Johnson continued as business 
manager. It appears that Nicholas 
had very little to do with running 
the department and that Johnson 
continued to handle athletic mat- 
ters just as he had since Heis- 
man's tenure as coach. At the 
same time, Ernie Fljertberg, the 
coach for track, resigned, charg- 
ing that the Committee on Out- 
door Sports did not support his 
athletes the way it did the foot- 
ball and basketball teams." 

Hiring Kitts had been John- 
son's idea. Johnson was responsi- 
ble for arranging support, public- 
ity, and direction for much of the 
Rice athletic program; in fact, 
without him the Institute's inter- 
collegiate athletic efforts in the 
thirties would probably have 
been few and half-hearted. Presi- 
dent Lovett wanted the students 
to have some athletic activities. 
However, he was not accustomed 
to the fact that collegiate athlet- 
ics had become a business and 
did not see the links that could 
be forged between campus and 
town supporters. Accordingly, he 
was content to let the Commit- 
tee on Outdoor Sports and the 
athletics business manager run 
the program. McCants had re- 
placed Watkin as chairman of the 
committee, and to be sure, the 
bursar knew what was going on. 
For day-to-day matters as well as 


The 1 9 ■50s 

100. Rice's 1937-38 Southwest Conference champion football team. 

larger concerns, though, Johnson 
was in charge. Johnson wanted to 
hire a high school coach with a 
good reputation. He reasoned 
that every high school coach be- 
lieved he could coach success- 
fully in college, if he were only 
given the opportunity. Johnson 
also thought that every other 
high school coach would send his 
best boys to that coach just to 
prove the first premise. So Rice 
hired Kitts from the Athens, 
Texas, high school as basketball 
coach in 1933, then made him 
football coach as well in 1934." 

With the suspended players 
back in action, Kitts's first season 
was a triumph. Rice boasted four 
All-Conference players that year: 
Leche Sylvester, Ralph Miller, 
and Ail-Americans Bill Wallace 
and John McCauley At the Bay- 
lor game, which clinched the 
conference championship, Presi- 
dent Lovett came to the locker 
room before the game to exhort 
the team to victory. John Mc- 
Cauley had left one of his shoes 

behind, and Lovett used the op- 
portunity to tell the story of 
Jason from Greek mythology, 
who was aJso missing a shoe at 
the beginning of his adventure. It 
is said that in the middle of the 
president's talk, one of the ends, 
Frank Steen, turned to captain 
Percy Arthur and asked, "Cap- 
tain, who in the hell did Jason 
play for;"" 

Rice won the Southwest Con- 
ference championship under 
Kitts in 1934 and again in 1937. 
In 1938 the Owls played their 
first Cotton Bowl game, beating 
Colorado 28-14. This game was 
the second played under the des- 
ignation "the Cotton Bowl," 
which was at that time a private 
enterprise run by Dallas busi- 
nessman J. Curtis Sanford. In 
that same year the conference 
contracted to play in the bowl 
game for three years. A group 
known as the Custodian Com- 
mittee of the Cotton Bowl Game 
took it over in 1940, and that fall 
the conference faculty represen- 

tatives approved the creation of 
the Cotton Bowl Athletic Associ- 
ation as an agency of the con- 
ference. Some have suggested 
that there was some opposition 
in conference schools to such an 
endeavor, but that through the 
combined efforts of Rice's Gay- 
lord Johnson, James Stewart 
(director of the State Fair), and 
Dan Rogers of Texas Christian 
University, the opposition was 

With the addition of Eddie 
Dyer and Emmett Brunson [for- 
mer Rice stars) to the coaching 
staff, and with the support of 
booster clubs made up of all sorts 
of Houstonians, the Rice athletic 
program took off. Johnson, Nich- 
olas, the Committee on Outdoor 
Sports, and the coaches all worked 
for a balanced program, and the 
Institute reaped the rewards. 
Even with mediocre football 
teams, Rice beat Texas from 1934 
to 1938. Kitts's 1935 basketball 
team tied for first place in the 
conference with Arkansas and 

The 1930s 


loi. A moment from a basketball game in 1935, the yeai when the Owls 
tied with two other universities for the conference championship. 

102. £. Y. Steakley, a star from the 193S track team, nosing out a victory. 

Southern Methodist. Buster Bran- 
non, who was hired in 1939, 
coached the 1940 team to an- 
other championship with stars 
Frank Carswell and Bob Kinney. 
In track Brunson coached Fred 
Wolcott, the first man to hold 
world records for both high and 
low 220-yard hurdles. But that 
was not all. Brunson also coached 
Calvin Bell, Paul Sanders, Robert 
Fowler, and Joe Blagg to help wm 
the conference in 1938 and 1939. 
After Jake and Wilbur Hess won 
tennis honors in the early thir- 
ties, Frank Guernsey and Dick 
Morris starred in 1938 and 1939. 
Golf was not left out, as the 1939 
team of Ed Letscher, Harry Chris- 
mann, Joe Finger, and Ed Seaman 
also won the conference cham- 
pionship. Veteran sportswriter 
Clark Nealon rightly calls 
the 1930s Rice's "golden era of 

It was clear by 1937 that, with 
strong community support for 
Rice teams, especially in football, 
the Rice Institute badly needed a 
new athletic stadium. The old 
bleachers held nine or ten thou- 
sand spectators, but thousands 
more wanted to come to the 
games. Because of the grim fi- 
nancial conditions, the trustees 
could not justify any construc- 
tion out of Institute funds. When 
the alumni association, the R 
Association (made up of Rice let- 
termen), Gaylord Johnson, and 
J. T McCants proposed that the 
old stadium be renovated, the 
trustees were perfectly willing to 
give the group a chance to raise 
money outside the campus, with 
the provision, of course, that the 
improved stadium remain the 


The 1930s 

103. The 1938 tennis team. Left to right: Frank Guernsey, Joe Lucia. Ebbie Holden. Max Campbell. Guernsey was the 
outstanding player in the Southwest Conference. 

property of the Institute and un- 
der the direct control of the trust- 
ees. The money was raised, in- 
cluding Si 5,000 that the board 
donated from proceeds of the 
1938 Cotton Bowl game; William 
Ward Watkin drew up plans, and 
the rehabilitated stadium soon 
held 30,000 screaming football 

After a disappointing season in 
1938 and a disastrous one in 
1939, Jimmy Kitts was dismissed 
by the Committee on Outdoor 
Sports. In his place the board 
hired Jess Claiborne Neely, who 
had been coaching at Clemson 
Agricultural College. In Neely's 
first season, the Owls tied for 
third in the conference with the 
University of Texas (defeating 
Texas 13-0), and in 1941 they 
fell to fourth. Neely barely had 
time to build a team before 
World War II disrupted everyone's 

The Distant Thunder of 
World Events 

Rice was still its own little island 
during the 1930s. Only occasion- 
ally did the outside world seem 
to make any impression on the 
campus beyond student discus- 
sions in the dormitories or Autry 
House. Students writing in the 
Thresher made few comments 
about the depression or politics 
until the middle thirties, and 
then only in response to specific 
events. In 1935 a poll taken by 
the Literary Digest and the As- 
sociation of College Editors re- 
vealed that Rice students op- 
posed the League of Nations and 
wanted to stay out of war if one 
came, but that they favored uni- 
versal conscription in time of 
war, along with government con- 
trol of munitions and fighting if 
the United States were invaded. 
In spring 1936 a satirical move- 

ment begun at Princeton and 
calling Itself the "Veterans of Fu- 
ture Wars" came to campus. Rice 
students who proclaimed them- 
selves members of the organi- 
zation called for their "1965 bo- 
nuses" to be paid immediately. 
At a rowdy meeting they elected 
officers, including lobbyists to 
represent the Rice chapter in 
Washington. Antagonistic stu- 
dents pelted the "future vets" 
with mud balls and interrupted 
them with catcalls. Although 
some genuine veterans' groups 
protested the existence of such 
an organization. Dean Weiser 
said he thought the protest move- 
ment was a farce; he took no ac- 
tion against the satirical group. 
After the rally, it appears that the 
students simply went back to 
their books or card games.'" 

When events brought Europe to 
the brink of war in 1939, the 
Thresher began to publish more 

The 1930s 


104. The 1939 golf team. Ed Letscber and Joe Finger llettermen) were co-captains. 

articles about the world outside 
the hedges. The actual declara- 
tion of war by Great Britain 
against Germany in September 
moved President Lovett in his 
matriculation address to call for 
strict observance of neutrality by 
the students; he urged them to 
"resolve to go forward with the 
business that brings you here as 
though there were no war, and 
thereby become better equipped 
to serve the country with all your 
might in peace and, if you must, 

in war." Rice had its first casu- 
alty that September. Kurt von 
lohnson had been a student from 
1929 until 1 93 1, when his family 
moved back to their German 
homeland. Von Johnson became 
a lieutenant in the German army 
and died in the invasion of 

In October 1939 the dean 
moved to abolish a new organiza- 
tion on campus, the Rice Progres- 
sive Party. The purpose of the 
party was to increase political in- 

terest on campus, although the 
dean did not object to that. His 
reservations concerned other par- 
ties that might be organized in 
opposition and whether the party 
would remain true to its original 
purpose. Weiser thought that the 
best interests of the Institute 
would not be served through 
such organizations.*"' 

By the end of the decade, the 
distant thunder of world events 
was moving ever closer to Amer- 
ica and to the Rice Institute. 


A Decade of Change: The 1940s 

The declaration of war against 
Japan and Germany by the United 
States had httle immediate effect 
on the Rice campus. Seniors did 
not enhst m large numbers in 
[December 1941, unlike their 
counterparts in April 19 17; in 
fact, the Thresher advised stu- 
dents to stay in school and finish 
the year. Neither did the univer- 
sity administration try to make 
any schedule changes for the 
spring of 1942. In May 1941 the 
Navy had established an ROTC 
unit at Rice, and in September 
107 freshmen and sophomores 
had been accepted into the volun- 
tary program." As a result, there 
was no need to impose a military 
structure on the entire campus, 
as the administration had done in 

War Affects the Campus 

In February 1942 the faculty pro- 
posed and the board accepted a 
plan to help seniors graduate be- 

fore entering the service. The ac- 
ademic year for engineers and 
architects would conclude early, 
and the date for commencement 
exercises was moved forward. For 
the school year 1942-43, senior 
classes in engineering and archi- 
tecture were accelerated to finish 
by April 3, 1943. In addition, all 
students who held senior stand- 
ing by the end of the spring term 
in 1942 were allowed to take two 
courses at approved summer 
schools, add one extra course to 
the regular senior schedule in the 
fall at Rice, and complete their 
graduation requirements in Feb- 
ruary 1943. Predental, prelaw, 
and premedical students who left 
to pursue professional degrees 
after their third year received 
bachelor's degrees from Rice after 
their professional graduation. 
Schedules for all other students 
remained the same as in previous 

To keep open the colleges and 
universities of the United States 
that would supply the military 
with officers and trained special- 

ists, the Army and Navy spec- 
ified that some colleges have 
training programs that would be 
separate from their ROTC units. 
Some schools, like Rice, taught 
naval engineers; others, such as 
Texas A&M and Texas Tech- 
nological College, taught army 
engineers and aviation cadets. 
Under these programs, men were 
picked by a branch of service and 
assigned to a campus for training. 
While in training, they were on 
active duty: they received pay, re- 
mained in uniform, and were 
governed by general military dis- 
cipline. President Lovett was 
notified in March 1943 that Rice 
had been selected for the pro- 
gram; he was instructed to pre- 
pare for S30 trainees (342 engi- 
neering students designated 
"V-12" and 188 ROTC students).' 

Although the Navy did not 
take over the school — the total 
student body remained about half 
civilian — at times it looked as if 
the sailors had. Navy men out- 
numbered civilian men by about 
two to one, and no civilian men 

The 1940s 


were housed on campus. The res- 
idential halls were renovated and 
repaired, and two new class- 
rooms for the Navy were con- 
structed over the machine shop. 
Rice also went on the Navy's 
schedule, continuing classes 
year-round. The Navy prescribed 
the curriculum and general course 
outlines for its officer training 
and engineering courses and also 
set the calendar to consist of 
three sixteen-week terms begni- 
ning in July, November, and 
March. Under this accelerated 
schedule, commencement exer- 
cises were held at the end of each 
two-term segment bcgmnmg in 
February 1944 and lastmg until 
March 1946. The thirty-third 
commencement in fune 1946 put 
the Institute back on its normal 
prewar academic calendar.' 

Navy men had to follow a mili- 
tary routine that included re- 
veille at 6:00 A.M., drill, specified 
study time from 7:30 to io;oo 
P.M., and taps at 10:30. However, 
they could also participate m any 
extracurricular activities that did 
not interfere with their courses 
or duties. They joined clubs, 
went to parties, played on both 
intramural and varsity teams, 
took part in the air-raid and 
blackout drills, and behaved 
pretty much as other Rice stu- 
dents did. Some of the V-12 men, 
however, were unprepared for 
college work, and their grades 
suffered. Six weeks after the start 
of the program, Wednesday night 
liberty was canceled, and the Sec- 
ond Battalion was ordered to re- 
main on campus to work on their 
studies. The V-12 students were 
also handicapped in their gradua- 

tion credits. The Navy sent them 
to Rice for six to eight terms, 
after which they went to Reserve 
Midshipmen's School or to an- 
other assignment, but without 
the full number of credits needed 
to meet Rice's graduation re- 
quirements. Dean G. H. Richter 
remembers that some of these 
men disliked the Institute while 
they were there and swore they 
would never come back; yet 
many did return after the war to 
earn their degrees.' 

Although the campus was rela- 
tively quiet during the war, an 
off-campus incident resulted in 
the termination of an instructor's 
appointment. Heinnch K. E. M. 
Meyer, an instructor in German 
who had verbally defended his 
native Germany five years before, 
was found guilty in federal court 
of securing his United States citi- 
zenship by fraud. The court can- 
celed his naturalization certifi- 
cate in February 1943, and that 
same month the trustees released 
him from the faculty. Although 
the Fifth Circuit Court of Ap- 
peals reinstated Meyer's citi- 
zenship, he did not return to the 

With the cessation of hostil- 
ities, the Navy program in 
schools with only V-12 units 
came to a halt in November 
1945. In those schools that had 
both V-12 and Naval ROTC 
units, as Rice did, the program 
continued until luly 1946. At 
Rice twenty-one seniors who 
were still in the program received 
Bachelor of Science degrees in 
naval science in the June gradua- 
tion ceremonies. The Naval 
ROTC program continued on a 

peacetime basis thereafter at the 
Institute and was joined by a unit 
of the Army ROTC in the fall of 
195 1.' 

Important Changes During 
the War Years 

World War II was not the only 
momentous event that affected 
the Institute in the early 1940s. 
In April 1941 Captain James 
Baker asked two of his firm's 
lawyers to determine what legal 
proceedings would be necessary 
to permit the charging of tuition. 
Baker continued to be troubled 
by the school's financial situa- 
tion, and when the alumni fund 
drive and appeals to Houstonians 
for support brought in only a 
small amount, the board chair- 
man saw little chance of increas- 
ing income enough to cover ever- 
rising expenses without the relief 
that tuition might provide. His 
lawyers thought the court would 
permit tuition charges once the 
Institute had clearly demon- 
strated that the general object of 
the trust would be greatly ham- 
pered and in part defeated unless 
the change was made. Baker pre- 
sented his firm's opinion to the 
board, recommending that the 
trustees test the question of tui- 
tion in court. The board in turn 
authorized him to proceed with 
the matter and notify them in ad- 
vance of the filing of the suit. 
However, the suit was not filed 
because of subsequent events." 

May 1 941 marked the fiftieth 
anniversary of the founding of 
the corporation, the William M. 
Rice Institute for the Advance- 


The 1940s 

mcnt of Literature, Science and 
Art. The hoard held a special 
meeting on April 23 to vote to 
seek renewal of the charter, as 
was necessary under Texas law. 
The resolution to extend the 
charter for another fifty years was 
unanimously adopted and filed 
with the Secretary of State. 

On May 14, 1941, Edgar Odell 
Lovett resigned the presidency of 
the Rice Institute. Citing his age 
(seventy) as his reason, he asked 
to be relieved of the duties of the 
office that he had held since 
1907, but he also offered to carry 
on until a successor could be 
found. He wished to retain his 
membership on the board. The 
trustees reluctantly accepted 
Lovett 's resignation but were 
happy that he would stay until 
his successor assumed office. 
When the new president took 
over, Lovett would become presi- 
dent emeritus; of course he would 
continue as a trustee. Dr. Lovett 
and the board probably thought it 
would take a year or two to find a 
new president. Instead, it was to 
take five.' 

On August I, 1 94 1, the man 
whom William Marsh Rice had 
designated chairman of the Board 
of Trustees, the only chairman 
the Institute had had. Captain 
lames A. Baker, died at the age of 
eighty-five. He left his home, 
"The Oaks," to Rice for the trust- 
ees to use as they saw fit. If it 
was sold, the proceeds from the 
sale were to constitute a gift 
known as the "lames A. Baker 
and Alice Graham Baker Be- 
quest," to be used for scholar- 
ships and fellowships, prizes, or 
supplements to professors' sal- 

aries. In 1 942 the trustees chose 
to sell the home to the M. D. An- 
derson Foundation for $62,000 
and establish four scholarships 
for undergraduates. 

One event, at least, amelio- 
rated the financial situation. That 
fall, oil was discovered on the 
Rice lands in Louisiana that were 
part of the original endowment.' 

Postwar Changes 

In September 1946 the Rice Insti- 
tute opened its doors on a purely 
civilian basis again, but it was 
not the old Institute of prewar 
days. Some extremely important 
changes had occurred at the high- 
est levels, and more were to take 
place on the student level. 

Changes began with the Board 
of Trustees. When Captain Baker 
died in 1941, William M. Rice, 
Ir., was elected chairman of the 
board. However, the trustees did 
not immediately name a suc- 
cessor to Baker's place. When 
they did not, the alumni asso- 
ciation seized the opportunity 
to lobby for a Rice alumnus as 
trustee, an idea popular among 
the alumni since at least 1938. In 
that year the association presi- 
dent, I. M. Wilford, had sent the 
trustees an association resolution 
calling for alumni representation 
on the board. Baker, who con- 
fused the Association of Rice 
Alumni with the R Association 
in his letter, replied that the 
number of trustees was fixed, and 
since there no vacancies, the 
board was deferring further con- 
sideration on the request. He 
added, however, that the trust- 

ees would be happy to confer 
with any committee that the 
alumni might form to discuss 
matters pertaining to "Public Re- 
lations, Athletics, or some kind- 
red subject." " 

In 1940 the Public Relations 
Committee of the alumni associ- 
ation met with the board. Con- 
sisting of the new association 
president Harvin C. Moore along 
with members ]. Newton Ray- 
zor, F. Fisher Reynolds, Carl M. 
Knapp, John Schuhmacher, and 
Henry Oliver, the committee re- 
quested again that the board se- 
riously consider selecting an 
alumnus for the next vacant posi- 
tion. According to the board min- 
utes, Baker stated "that it was his 
opinion, that should a vacancy 
occur on the Board, that the 
Trustees would be pleased to dis- 
cuss with the Committee the se- 
lection of a new member of the 
Board, . . . that the Trustees and 
the Committee were working 
wholeheartedly in the interest of 
the Institute, and the Trustees 
will always be happy at all times 
to confer with the Committee in 
respect to all matters affecting 
the Institute." The minutes for 
the meeting ended with a state- 
ment of harmony and satisfac- 
tion in every particular, but 
appearances were deceiving. 
Trustee A. S. Cleveland later told 
his son-in-law, William A. Kirk- 
land, that Baker was angry about 
such alumni "interference" in 
board affairs.' 

By 1942, with the vacant board 
position still unfilled, the alumni 
association did not wait to be 
asked for advice. Its Executive 
Board, still under Moore's presi- 

The 1940s 


dency, sent the trustees another 
resolution urging that an alum- 
nus be selected for the position. 
They accompanied the resolution 
with a list of six candidates. 
Whether or not the trustees con- 
sidered the alumni candidates 
is unknown, but in May they 
elected oilman Harry Clay Hans- 
zen, who had attended the Uni- 
versity of Chicago for two years." 

That year the board made its 
first venture into the oil business 
outside of the inherited Rice land 
in Louisiana. County ludge Roy 
Hofheinz, a Rice alumnus, had in 
his court the disposition of the 
estate of the late W. R. Davis. 
Davis's estate included half of 
the working interest in oil prop- 
erties and other leases in the Rin- 
con field in Starr County Texas. 
Because of indebtedness amount- 
ing to approximately $5 million 
and the fifty percent tax on cor- 
porate profits, no corporation, 
including the Continental Oil 
Company (which owned the 
other half interest and operated 
the field), could afford to pur- 
chase the estate. The other lease 
properties comprised the Val- 
ley Pipe Line Company (which 
owned half of the pipeline), the 
Rincon Pipe Line Company, and 
half of the Brownsville Terminal. 

Endeavoring to settle the es- 
tate, the judge sought a purchaser 
who would be exempt from the 
corporate tax. He decided that 
the Rice Institute would benefit 
best from ownership of the oil 
properties. He then approached 
George R. Brown of Brown & 
Root, who was a Rice alumnus, 
and Harry C. Wiess, one of the 
organizers of the Humble Oil 

Company, to go before the Rice 
board with him and propose that 
the Institute purchase the prop- 
erties. The first scheme of pur- 
chase called for a cash outlay of 
$547,000 by friends of Rice who 
would then give the properties, 
subject to the remaining indebt- 
edness, to the Institute. The 
trustees, on advice of counsel, de- 
cided that such a plan would be 
acceptable under the charter, but 
the banks to whom the debts 
were owed insisted on a mini- 
mum of $1 million in cash be- 
fore they would agree to such a 

Everyone connected with the 
deal was confident of raising 
the first half million; they had 
planned to do that anyway. The 
other half million, however, 
would be more difficult. It would 
have to come from the Institute 
itself, even though its charter 
stated that the trustees were "ex- 
pressly forbidden ever to permit 
any lien, encumbrance, debt or 
mortgage to be placed upon any 
of the property, or funds, belong- 
ing now, or that may hereafter 
belong to the said Institute; . . . 
that the entire property of the In- 
stitute shall always be kept free 
from debt.'"" The trustees never- 
theless voted to make the invest- 
ment in the oil field and supply 
the half million needed. So that 
no question could be raised about 
the propriety of their action, a 
suit was brought in district court 
against the attorney general for 
authorization of the investment. 
The court empowered the trust- 
ees to make the purchase with 
donated money and the Insti- 
tute's funds and further autho- 

rized them to make investments 
of a like kind and character m 
the future. The trustees could 
thereby diversify the Institute's 
investments, no longer limited to 
those types of first mortgage 
loans and bonds that had charac- 
terized the cautious investments 
of the Baker board. In addition, 
the court allowed the trustees to 
add to the endowment or treat as 
income the net proceeds from the 
Rincon investment. 

Rice ultimately purchased 
29/64 of the Davis interest in the 
Rincon field. Of the donations 
from friends of Rice, $200,000 
was donated by Mr. and Mrs. 
George R. Brown, Mr. and Mrs. 
Herman Brown, Mr. and Mrs. 
W. S. Parish, Mr. and Mrs. S. P. 
Parish, Mr. and Mrs. Hugh R. 
Cullen, Mr. and Mrs. H. C. 
Wiess, and Mr. Harry C. Hans- 
zen. The remaining $300,000 
came from the M. D. Anderson 
Poundation with the understand- 
ing that the Institute would, with 
the profits from the investment, 
construct a library or other build- 
ing in memory of Mr. Anderson 
(one of the four original partners 
in Anderson, Clayton), as soon as 
sufficient net oil revenues had 
been collected. The Rincon in- 
vestment turned out to be ex- 
tremely profitable. Debts owed to 
the banks were paid from profits 
by 1946, and by 1978 the Insti- 
tute was some $35 million 

In October 1942, while the 
board was still working on the 
Rincon purchase, trustee Robert 
Lee Blaffer died. To take his 
place, the board elected George 
R. Brown in January 1943. Brown 


The 1940s 

' ^y^r^../, 

v/. . / 

■ rtr.. 

SOL'HT ■'^ K'^'i^l Co 

105. The signing ceremony marking Rice's purchase of interest in the Rmcon Oil Field. December iS. 1942. Standing, 
left to right: A. S. Cleveland, Tom Davis, C, A, Dwyer, Palmer Hutcheson, John Freeman, fames E. Elkins. County 
Judge Roy Hofheinz, A. H. Fulhright, [ohn Q. Weatherly Harrv Hanszcn. Seated: lames L. Shepherd, fr., Beniamin 
Botts Rice, folm T. Scott. 

was the first alumnus on the 
board, although he had not gradu- 
ated from the Institute, having 
left to join the Marines in World 
War I and afterward having com- 
pleted his college education at 
the Colorado School of Mmes. 

In July 1944 chairman William 
M. Rice, Jr., died after forty-five 

years on the board. Philanthropy 
must have run in the Rice family, 
for this William Marsh Rice also 
left the bulk of his estate, approx- 
imately $2 million, to the Insti- 
tute. His successor as trustee was 
Harry C. Wiess, like Blaffer a 
Humble oilman, and like Brown 
one of the "friends of Rice" who 

had helped with the Rineon 
purchase. lohn T. Scott became 
chairman. " 

By 194 s the board was ready to 
consider plans for the future of 
the Institute. The Rice alumni 
association's Executive Board, 
headed by Carl M. Knapp, had 
written the previous year to urge 

The 1940s 


that the facuhy, curriculum, and 
physical plant be improved; that 
the Board of Trustees determine 
what legal steps would be neces- 
sary in order to charge tuition; 
and that the board employ an per- 
son whose sole duty would be to 
raise money for the Institute. 
Also in that year Brown and 
Hanszen requested and received 
from President Lovett a three- 
page memorandum concerning 
the development of the Institute 
and early decisions regardmg its 
educational program. Except for 
the information provided by Lov- 
ett, the board had only a vague 
picture of such matters as enroll- 
ment in the various disciplines, 
past university costs, and future 

The Humble Oil and Refining 
Company, of which Wiess was 
president, had just completed a 
survey of its own history; and 
when Wiess became a trustee, he 
suggested that Rice do the same. 
With the W. M. Rice gift, the oil 
income from the Louisiana lands, 
and the future income from Rin- 
con all to be invested, the board 
needed some idea of where the 
money was going and the di- 
rection in which the Institute 
should go. In February 1945 the 
trustees established three com- 
mittees to work out a program. 
Wiess, B. B. Rice, Brown, and 
Lovett formed the Survey Com- 
mittee, which was charged with 
an analysis of past developments, 
present status, and future out- 
look for the Institute along with 
its financial and educational af- 
fairs. On the Finance Committee 
for the purchase of securities 
were Brown, Hanszen, and Cleve- 

land. The Loan Committee, 
which handled real estate loans, 
consisted of Scott, Rice, Cleve- 
land, and Lovett. '- 

Under Wiess's direction, the 
survey covered a number of 
aspects of the university's experi- 
ence from 1929 to 1943: enroll- 
ment by classes, gender, and 
division; degrees awarded; fac- 
ulty and faculty compensation; 
educational expense per year and 
per student; income and expendi- 
tures; and financial resources. 
Some interesting information 
came to light in this survey. Rice 
was not simply the engineering 
school that many thought it was. 
Throughout the entire period, 49 
percent of the students had been 
registered in the liberal arts 
school (which included the pure 
sciences and mathematics) and 
33.7 percent in engineering and 
architecture. The remaining 17 
percent were enrolled in physical 
education, premedical, and gradu- 
ate programs. Engineering, how- 
ever, was growing rapidly even 
before the advent of the Navy 
curriculum, with the proportion 
of men enrolled, increasing from 
36 percent in 1929 to 50 percent 
in 1 941. Mechanical and chemi- 
cal engineering accounted for the 
increase; civil and electrical engi- 
neering were in decline. Of the 
3,421 degrees awarded from 1930 
to 1943, 2,246 were Bachelor of 
Arts degrees, 959 Bachelor of Sci- 
ence, and 216 advanced degrees. 
While total enrollment had been 
kept at around 1,400 per year, the 
number of women had been de- 
creasing, especially in the pre- 
vious six years. During this time 
the number of faculty members 

had declined from 73 to s S, al- 
though before the war started, 
there had been 64 faculty mem- 
bers. The decline in staff was 
mostly in mathematics, lan- 
guages, and history, while the en- 
gineering faculty had increased in 
size. Faculty compensation had 
remained relatively constant 
through the fourteen years, at an 
average of $3,300 to $3,700 per 
year. The base rate of pay was 
$2,000 to $3,000 for instructors, 
$3,000 to $3,750 for assistant 
professors, and $3,500 to $8,000 
for professors. In their prelimi- 
nary survey report the committee 
remarked, "It is probable that the 
uniformity in salary rate and lack 
of advancement over a period of 
years had exerted an adverse in- 
fluence on the faculty." Cost per 
student had decreased from $399 
to 1929 to $332 in 1942 as the 
total annual operating expenses 
of the Institute had decreased in 
that period from $499,000 to 
$384,000. Income from invest- 
ments had likewise decreased 
from $734,000 to $650,000." 

"It is the recommendation of 
this committee," the final report 
stated, "that Rice Institute con- 
tinue the basic program that it 
has developed since 1912." The 
committee called for a well- 
rounded and balanced program in 
all fields, for expansion of the 
faculty, and for efforts to secure 
more financial support. Espe- 
cially critical would be the selec- 
tion of the next president of the 
Institute, who would have to ad- 
minister the expanded activities 
and attract people of ability to 
the faculty. The financial outlook 
was optimistic. When the debt 


The 19405 

against Rincon was paid, Rice in- 
terest in the field was estimated 
to be worth at least S8 million on 
the basis of 3.5 percent interest. 
At that rate of return, the income 
available after providing for 
maintenance of capital would be 
about $280,000 a year, which was 
equal to more than 40 percent of 
the average annual income from 
all Institute investments from 
1937 to 1943. The Rincon in- 
come, plus that from the W. M. 
Rice gift and from the Louisiana 
oil lands, would enable the In- 
stitute to increase its expendi- 
tures for educational purposes by 
more than 50 percent compared 
with the budget immediately 
before the war. For example, 
the committee estimated that 
$625,000 would be available for 
the school after 1947, compared 
with average yearly expenditures 
of $390,000 for the period 1938 to 
1943. "This will make possible 
carrying out a number of im- 
provements that will strengthen 
the Institute," the committee 

The Trustees' 
Long-Range Plan 

One of the most momentous 
developments in the history of 
the Institute was the long-range 
plan that the Board of Trustees 
adopted in 194s- This ambitious 
program, perhaps more than any 
other, laid the groundwork for 
the Institute's metamorphosis 
from a school of mainly regional 
reputation to a university with 
national standing. The long- 
range plan would encompass aca- 

demic objectives, an extensive 
building program, and expansion 
of the faculty and facilities, as 
well as a program of outreach 
into the community. 

The foremost objective of the 
plan was academic devek)pment: 
the Institute would continue to 
provide especially good training 
for a limited number of students 
through a broad and sound basic 
program, to set a high standard of 
scholarship, and to provide lead- 
ership in higher education. The 
curriculum would also be well 
developed, with expansion in arts 
and letters, although the empha- 
sis would remain on science and 
research. To help achieve these 
objectives, the trustees would 
look for aid from well-qualified 
individuals not directly con- 
nected with the board and would 
create committees for the various 
phases of the Institute's affairs 
staffed partly with these "out- 
siders." No longer would the 
board consist primarily of older 
men; provision would be made 
for the position of trustee emer- 
itus after trustees had reached a 
certain age. The educational ad- 
ministrative hierarchy of presi- 
dent, deans, and other officers 
was to maintain a close relation- 
ship with faculty and students; 
written into the plan was the 
stipulation that administrative 
officers teach some classes. 

The substantial building pro- 
gram included plans for a library, 
classrooms, laboratories, dor- 
mitories, and a house for the 
president. Concerning the fac- 
ulty, the trustees wanted people 
of the highest ability and a lower 
ratio of students to faculty (ten 

to one instead of the existing fif- 
teen or twenty to one). To attract 
and maintain an illustrious fac- 
ulty, the university would estab- 
lish a salary scale competitive 
with other leading educational 

As the faculty expanded, so 
would the curriculum, including 
diversified graduate and research 
work. For the latter, graduate fel- 
lowships and scholarships would 
be created. The program did not 
call for an enlarged student body, 
just a return to the prewar enroll- 
ment of about 1,400. It also did 
not specify how many graduate 
students there should be; from 
1929 to 1943, the average number 
was 58. Careful selection would 
remain the rule for admission, in 
order to maintain high educa- 
tional standards. 

Finally, while the trustees rec- 
ognized that current assets and 
income might be inadequate for 
full attainment of their goals, 
they were undertaking the pro- 
gram in the belief that the public 
would recognize the value of 
these objectives to the commu- 
nity, state, and nation and would 
help the Institute to complete its 

Once the development plan 
had been formulated, and in 
some cases even before a particu- 
lar segment had crystallized, the 
board started working toward 
its goals. By November Wiess 
could tell the Association of Rice 
Alumni that members of the fac- 
ulty had been promoted and that 
salary adjustments had been 
made. Without waiting to con- 
clude plans for financing, the 
trustees commissioned the local 

The 1940s 


firm of Staub and Rather as archi- 
tects for a library building, with 
William Ward Watkin as consul- 
tant. Preliminary estimates indi- 
cated that the cost of the building 
as envisioned would be over $1 
million, and Wiess mentioned to 
alumni that the trustees would 
welcome and appreciate their 
support. Indeed, Wiess empha- 
sized the need for their help for 
the realization of all the Insti- 
tute's newly articulated goals. '^ 

A President to Succeed 
Edgar O. Lovett 

Selecting a new president took 
more time than choosing a li- 
brary architect. Between 1941 
and 1945, the board had consid- 
ered at least twenty possible 
candidates, including Lee A. Du- 
Bridge, a physicist who took the 
presidency at the California Insti- 
tute of Technology, William C. 
Devane, a dean at Yale Univer- 
sity, and John C. Slater, a physics 
professor at the Massachusetts 
Institute of Technology. Of those 
mentioned. President Lovett was 
most interested in the two physi- 
cists and preferred getting "a 
young scholar on the way to a 
sound reputation." For various 
reasons, the wartime search had 
been unsuccessful. Many of the 
leading scientists had been en- 
gaged in war work, and none of 
the others had proved suitable. '~ 
As the war wound down, and 
even before the preliminary sur- 
vey was completed, the trustees 
discussed their search with the 
faculty. If alumni could help with 
financial matters, faculty could 

help with the selection of their 
next president. On April 10, 
194s, the trustees gave a dinner 
for the faculty at Cohen House, 
at which John Scott addressed the 
question after explaining the fi- 
nancial prospects of the univer- 
sity and some improvements 
being contemplated. The trustees 
knew what they wanted in a 
president, "(i) He must be a man 
of excellent character, with an 
established reputation. (2) He 
should have had experience m 
teaching, the ability to lead and 
inspire confidence, and the per- 
sonality to deal with people. (3) 
He should have a scientific train- 
ing, but with a sufficiently broad 
background and attitude to give 
appreciation to all the needs 
of a well-balanced educational 

The trustees wanted the fac- 
ulty to select a temporary com- 
mittee of three members to be 
available to consult with them, 
to analyze the qualifications of 
the candidates, and to furnish in- 
formation about them. So that 
there would be no misunder- 
standing, Scott also stated that 
the final choice was the responsi- 
bility of the board. "This is not 
the type of matter that can be 
handled by a majority vote, but it 
is one in which the best advice 
and counsel of all parties con- 
cerned needs to be taken into ac- 
count," he said."' 

Four days later the faculty met 
and elected three members for 
the committee. Alan McKillop 
would represent the humanities, 
George H. Richter the pure sci- 
ences, and Lewis B. Ryon the 
applied sciences. They agreed 

completely with the board's 
requirements for a president, 
adding their thoughts that the In- 
stitute would be best served also 
by a man "who has had a sub- 
stantial part of his training and 
experience in a university having 
a comparable well-rounded pro- 
gram . . . , rather than by a man 
from an institution centered en- 
tirely about pure and applied 
science." They also wanted a 
president with "an interest in the 
practical problems of educational 
administration" and with demon- 
strated ability in handling the sit- 
uations that arose in the daily life 
of a university."" 

Harry Wiess, George Brown, 
and B. B. Rice made up the board 
committee that did the actual 
work of searching, but it was 
Wiess who traveled, interviewed, 
and gathered information on pos- 
sible candidates. The trustees 
used every avenue they could to 
find their man. Old friends and 
new acquaintances suggested 
names, evaluated personalities, 
and offered advice. A query to the 
Navy produced an outstanding 
recommendation for one candi- 
date, along with the admonition 
that, if Rice wanted him, he 
would be available only after V-J 
Day. The trustees had some ex- 
cellent possibilities to consider, 
but it must have been frustrating 
to have men like Philip M. Morse 
of MIT and James Fisk of the Bell 
Laboratories take themselves out 
of the running. 

Whenever a candidate said no, 
Wiess had a friend or acquaint- 
ance of the candidate sound him 
out a day or two later to be sure 
that his mind was really made 


The 1940s 

up. One man to whom the trust- 
ees returned after he stated that 
he did not want to undertake an 
exclusively administrative job 
was William V. Houston (pro- 
nounced "how-ston") of the Cal- 
ifornia Institute of Technology. A 
physicist, Dr. Houston had re- 
ceived unqualified recommenda- 
tions but had been somewhat 
overshadowed, at least in Wiess's 
notes of his recruiting activities, 
by a couple of other candidates. 
By November 1945, however, 
when the trustees still had not 
found a president (and possibly 
because the faculty liked Hous- 
ton), Wiess again approached the 
Californian, this time with an in- 
vitation to come to the campus. 
Regardless of whether it led to se- 
rious negotiations, Wiess told 
Houston, the visit would give 
the trustees a chance to consult 
with him about the presidential 
search. Houston seemed inter- 
ested, but was still reluctant to 
leave research and teaching and 
become solely an administrator. 
Wiess thought that arrangements 
could be made for the president 
to have some time free from ad- 
ministrative duties. 

Dr. and Mrs. Houston visited 
the campus in December, and the 
trustees were so impressed that 
they offered the physicist the 
position on December 8. Hous- 
ton took two weeks to consider 
the offer and replied by phone 
that he was favorably inclined. 
Before making a final decision, 
however, he wanted to set forth 
his views on various matters so 
that he and the trustees would be 
sure they understood each other. 
They had mentioned moving the 

business office of the histitute 
from the downtown office to the 
campus; Houston thought that 
highly desirable, since it was the 
president's duty in most institu- 
tions to prepare and present the 
budget to the trustees and then 
to exercise close scrutiny of the 
disbursal of funds. "Educational 
policy, as well as thrift, must de- 
termine the way in which the 
available income is used, for the 
way in which it is used deter- 
mines the extent to which the in- 
stitution is deserving of local and 
national support," he told the 
board. Houston questioned the 
appropriateness of a prominent 
football team in a university that 
wished to be known as an out- 
standing intellectual center. He 
thought he would be able to "get 
along with it," however, if the 
athletic program's enrollment 
were held to the existing size of 
about one hundred. 

Those topics out of the way, 
Houston then concentrated on 
academic concerns. First, he in- 
tended to carry on research and 
teaching and wanted to be ap- 
pointed professor of physics as 
well as president. Second, he 
wanted to continue developing 
the science and engineering pro- 
grams, particularly physics, 
chemistry, and the engineering 
based on them, "somewhat to the 
exclusion of other fields." Princi- 
pal expansion in graduate in- 
struction and research should be 
in these areas, while other fields 
would concentrate on the under- 
graduate division. He expected to 
make additions to the faculty, not 
only with young teachers of ini- 
tially low rank but also with two 

or three men of distinction. Lead- 
ers in their fields would attract 
young instructors of the highest 
quality and make the Institute's 
objectives clear, but they would 
also be expensive, he warned. 
For the older faculty, Houston 
wanted to initiate a retirement 
plan providing for compulsory re- 
tirement at a definite age. Finally, 
to deal with the isolation of Rice 
from other intellectual centers, 
Houston proposed encouraging 
the faculty with some financial 
assistance to travel to scholarly 
meetings and to study elsewhere, 
and bringing in distinguished 
lecturers for periods of several 

On December ^i, 194s, the 
board expressed its accord with 
each of Dr. Houston's points. 
H. C. Wiess called Houston to 
tell him so, and Houston ac- 
cepted the offer to become the 
second president of the Rice In- 
stitute. He planned to assume his 
duties on March i, 1946, and 
seemed willing to accept Wiess's 
word "that while the situation re- 
garding the athletic program at 
the Institute may not be ideal. . . 
It is basically sound and in excel- 
lent hands under less Neely." The 
terms of employment included a 
salary of $20,000 a year and a 
house still to be built.'" 

On lanuary 4, 1946, the day 
after they announced the selec- 
tion of a new president, the trust- 
ees met to make significant 
changes in their own organiza- 
tion. It was clear at the time of 
the announcement of the long- 
range program in luly 194 s that 
all board members would have to 
devote long hours overseeing its 

The 1940s 


completion and that it would be 
advantageous to the Institute if 
younger men replaced some of 
the older members. Not all of the 
older members wanted to give up 
their positions, but they capitu- 
lated to the majority opinion. 
Since the board did not want to 
cut itself off from its past experi- 
ence, the reorganization included 
the creation of an emeritus posi- 
tion for trustees. Some members 
(Rice, Lovett, Scott, and Cleve- 
land) could have retired at that 
time, but the other trustees 
asked that they stay on until a 
new president was selected. The 
beginning of the new year and 
Dr. Houston's acceptance of the 
presidency provided an appropri- 
ate opportunity for change. 

First the bylaws of the Insti- 
tute were amended to permit any 
trustee over the age of seventy to 
resign and be elected trustee 
emeritus. Trustees emeriti could 
attend all meetings, advise, and 
express their views, but they 
would have no vote. B. B. Rice, 
A. S. Cleveland, E. O. Lovett, and 
[. T Scott then tendered their res- 
ignations, and in their places 
were elected Gus S. Wortham, 
William A. Kirkland, Frederick R. 
Lummis, M.D., and Lamar Flem- 
ing, Jr. Harry Hanszen was 
elected chairman. The new board 
then adopted a resolution of ap- 
preciation for the contributions 
of the retiring members. Rice had 
been on the board since 1901, 
Lovett since 1910, Scott since 
191 3, and Cleveland since 1922. 

Of the new members, Wortham 
was president of the American 
General Insurance Company and 
had connections with other busi- 

nesses as well; Kirkland, A. S. 
Cleveland's son-in-law, was a 
banker with the First National 
Bank of Houston,- Lummis was 
physician-in-chief at Hermann 
Hospital and professor of clinical 
medicine at Baylor College of 
Medicine (the first academic be- 
sides Lovett to serve on the 
board); and Fleming was presi- 
dent of Anderson, Clayton & Co., 
whose founders had been gener- 
ous supporters of the university 
in its early years.'" 

This new board was busy from 
the first, revamping investments 
for a higher yield, reorganizing 
accounting procedures to follow 
current methods for colleges, and 
helping the new president where 
it could. When debts on the Rin- 
con property were paid off in 
1947, total net assets of the Insti- 
tute were more than $29 million. 
The trustees had received more 
good financial news before the 
1947 accounting, however. In 
June 1946 Ella F. Fondren, widow 
of Humble oilman W W Fon- 
dren, contributed $1 million to 
the Institute for the construction 
of a library building. In October 
of that year, Harry Wiess gave 
Rice the income from 30,000 
shares of Humble Oil stock for 
seventeen and one-half years, to 
be used for current operating ex- 
penses. Afterward, the stock was 
to go to his children. At the time 
of the donation. Rice hoped to re- 
ceive about $1 million from 
Wiess's gift; the eventual sum 
was more than $4 million. The 
following March, James S. Aber- 
crombie (an oilman and a founder 
of Cameron Iron Works), his wife 
Lillie, and their daughter Jose- 

phine (Rice '46) gave $500,000 for 
an engineering laboratory build- 
ing. The economic picture was 
bright indeed." 

President Houston 
Takes Office 

Rice's new president arrived on 
campus in March 1946. William 
Vermillion Houston was born in 
Mt. Gilead, Ohio, on January 19, 
1900. He attended Ohio State 
University for Bachelor of Arts 
and Bachelor of Science degrees 
in education and graduated in 
1920 with membership in Phi 
Beta Kappa and Sigma Xi. He re- 
ceived a Master of Science degree 
from the University of Chicago 
in 1922 and returned to Ohio 
State for his doctorate, which he 
received in 1925. He had been a 
National Research Council fel- 
low at the California Institute of 
Technology, a Guggenheim fel- 
low, and a member of the faculty 
at Cal Tech since 1927, having 
been made full professor in 1931. 
He was the author of Principles 
of Mathematical Physics and 
many scientific articles, and dur- 
ing the war he had conducted re- 
search for the Office of Scientific 
Research, concentrating espe- 
cially on antisubmarine devices 
and torpedo designs." 

Official inauguration cere- 
monies for Houston were held on 
April ID, 1947. This was the first 
presidential inauguration at Rice. 
Edgar Odell Lovett had never 
been formally inaugurated; the 
1912 ceremonies that opened the 
school were formal ceremonies of 
dedication. Like those first cere- 


The 19408 

106, William Vermillion Houstun, the secunJ president of the Rice Institute. 

monies, the 1947 inaugural fes- 
tivities were held outdoors, but 
this time in front of the Chemis- 
try Building at eleven o'clock in 
the mornmg. They were kept 
simple and dignified. Agam came 
the procession of delegates, in- 
cludmg twenty-seven college 
presidents and various dignitaries 
from foreign institutions. Again 
the singing of "Veni Creator Spir- 
itus" opened the solemnities, al- 
though "America" closed the 
program in place of the "One 
Hundredth Psalm." Karl T Comp- 
ton, president of the Massachu- 
setts Institute of Technology, 
delivered an address entitled 
"Dynamic Education," and Harry 
C. Wiess as vice-chairman of the 

trustees inducted Houston into 
the office of president. After the 
inauguration ceremony came 
lunch in the Commons in honor 
of the delegates, where Lee A. 
DuBridge, president of the Cal- 
ifornia Institute of Technology, 

Following an afternoon recep- 
tion for the delegates at Cohen 
House, there was a dinner in 
honor of the new president and 
his wife. Addressing the group on 
behalf of the alumni was Carl M. 
Knapp, president of the Associa- 
tion of Rice Alumni, and on 
behalf of the people of Texas, 
Houston power broker Jesse H. 
(ones. Dr. Dixon Wecter, chair- 
man of the Research Group at the 

Huntington Library, then pre- 
sented a paper entitled "The Lone 
Star and the Constellation." 
While not the marathon of the 
opening, it was a full day." 

Edgar Odell Lovett became 
president emeritus upon Hous- 
ton's accession to the presi- 
dency, and in December 1947 the 
Administration Building was re- 
named "Lovett Hall" with the in- 
scription, "He has reared a monu- 
ment more lasting than brass." 
Lovett continued to occupy an of- 
fice in the building, although he 
moved down from the top floor 
to a somewhat more accessible 
location on the third floor.'' 

Many people have said that 
William Vermillion Houston was 
the perfect man to follow Edgar 
Odell Lovett as president of the 
Rice Institute. Interested in the 
same scholastic qualities, Hous- 
ton emphasized high standards, 
sound scholarship, and good 
teaching. "We aim to be a small 
university, small in total number 
of people and small in that we 
confine our efforts to restricted 
fields largely of the traditional 
university variety," he said. "We 
are firmly dedicated to the propo- 
sition that size and excellence are 
not synonymous. In fact, we be- 
lieve that we pursue excellence 
better in a small institution than 
some can in institutions much 
larger. Private institutions can 
help to lead the way in the qual- 
ity of education. This, I hope, the 
Rice Institute can do." While his 
own interest lay principally in 
science and its application to en- 
gineering, he also knew the value 
of humanistic studies. He wanted 
a balanced education for Rice 

The 1940s 


107. Dedication ceremonies renaming the Administration Building "Lovett Hall," December 4, i947- Left to right: 
Harry C. Wiess, Lamar Fleming. Jr., Harry Hanszen. President Emeritus Lovett, William A. Kirkland, George R. 
Brown. President Houston. Gus Wortham. Or Frederick Rice Lummis. 

students, both in introspective 
thought and the world of words 
and in material phenomena." 

President Houston must have 
been a pleasant surprise to the 
faculty when he took office. For 
years the Institute had run on the 
same track with few changes in 
procedure or personnel, espe- 

cially in administration. To get 
things done on campus, one saw 
bursar McCants, registrar Mc- 
Cann, Dean Weiser, or architect 
Watkin. Seldom did a professor 
bother the president with day-to- 
day details or even have any con- 
tact with him, although the 
courtly Lovett enjoyed talking 

with faculty members on those 
occasions when they did come to 
see him. Faculty meetings were 
few and far between, and no one 
seemed eager to bring up matters 
at them. The department heads 
ran their departments, the bursar, 
registrar, dean, architect, and 
president ran the Institute in a 


The 1940s 

gentlemanly, low-key fashion, 
and that was that. Dr. Houston 
wanted a higher profile. During 
his first two weeks on campus, 
he visited as many faculty mem- 
bers in their offices as he could, 
seeking information and asking 
about problems. He wanted to 
know his faculty personally. He 
wanted them to take a more ac- 
tive role on campus. 

At his first faculty meeting on 
March 16, Houston sketched his 
plans for the postwar Institute. 
He spoke of the need for students 
to have a balanced education, 
with the provision of a common 
core of basic training upon which 
to build specialties. The building 
program was under way, so relief 
was in sight for the overcrowded 
classrooms and offices. The size 
of the student body was to be 
held at 1,500 until the faculty 
was much larger than the exist- 
ing number (about 60). Houston 
was particularly interested in 
graduate study and research; to 
increase graduate enrollment as 
quickly as possible, he had per- 
sonally undertaken preparation 
and distribution of a graduate 
bulletin and poster indicating the 
availability of graduate fellow- 
ships. Since it took money to at- 
tract students of high quality and 
to compete with other graduate 
schools, Houston announced sti- 
pends available of up to $1,000, 
with remission of all fees. 

Whatever the quality of stu- 
dents, or the number of build- 
ings, or the victories of the foot- 
ball team, the academic standing 
and reputation of a university de- 
pended on its faculty. To meet 
the long-range program's goals. 

the number of professors had to 
be increased. Houston asked the 
faculty for their assistance in 
nominating possible candidates 
and investigating suitable people. 
He did not expect this to be a 
quick or easy task, because cer- 
tain special qualities were re- 
quired. A faculty member had to 
be an outstanding scholar: a pub- 
lishing scholar if in the human- 
ities, involved in research if in 
science, recognized by others if 
in the engineering profession. He 
had to be an inspiring teacher 
and recognize that teaching was 
an important part of the profes- 
sion. A faculty member had to be 
"cooperative and helpful" in the 
administration of the Institute. 
That meant serving on commit- 
tees, since the new president 
wanted the faculty to take over 
certain quasi-administrative 
functions. Finally, a faculty mem- 
ber had to be a respected citizen 
of the community.'" 

To advise on appointments to 
the faculty committees, the fac- 
ulty again elected Professors 
McKillop, Richter, and Ryon. 
These men formed the first Exec- 
utive Committee along with the 
president and the dean. The pur- 
pose of the various committees 
was to deal with all matters per- 
taining to educational policy, ad- 
ministration, and student life. 
The president appointed the com- 
mittees and delegated authority 
to them. Committees considered 
matters brought to them by fac- 
ulty or students and applied rules 
and settled cases without refer- 
ring details to the whole faculty 
for approval. New rules, policies, 
and precedents, however, did re- 

quire such approval at regular 
faculty meetings, which were to 
be held twice a semester. Also, 
individual faculty members were 
specifically given the power to in- 
troduce new business outside the 
committee structure and to ap- 
peal committee decisions at fac- 
ulty meetings. 

A number of committees were 
appointed, most of them reorgan- 
izations of old committees. A 
few, however, were new: the 
Committee on Graduate Instruc- 
tion with Dr. Houston as chair- 
man until a dean of graduate 
studies was named; the Commit- 
tee on the Library; and the Com- 
mittee on Student Activities, 
which would be chaired by a new 
assistant dean for student activi- 
ties, Hugh Scott Cameron, and 
which would include student 
members. The Navy Committee 
continued to operate as before, as 
did the Committee on Outdoor 
Sports, which was established in 
the Board of Trustees' bylaws.'" 

As had been obvious in nego- 
tiations for the presidency and in 
the establishment of committee 
policy, William V. Houston did 
not particularly care to run the 
school by himself. It has been 
said of him that he was never 
truly happy unless he was work- 
ing in his laboratory, which he 
had installed next to his office on 
the second floor of Lovett Hall, 
close to the Physics Building. 
'Thysics," he said, "is a hobby 
I've fortunately been able to pur- 
sue at full time all my life." 

By 1949 Houston had devel- 
oped his own inimitable style. 
Into one of the top drawers went 
almost everything that came 

The 1940s 


across his desk. There it fer- 
mented for a week or two, some- 
times longer. After a while, he 
would call in his assistant — a ju- 
nior faculty member who helped 
with the busy work of the admm- 
istration — and clean out his 
drawer. He told one of the as- 
sistants that he called the drawer 
"administration," and if he left 
things in there long enough, 
most of them settled themselves. 
What was left he divided between 
himself and the assistant. He 
used the same technique on the 
many questionnaires sent by 
various government agencies, 
professional organizations, and 
others. Houston detested ques- 
tionnaires. He answered only the 
imperative ones, had the as- 
sistant handle some others, and 
left the rest to sit, maintaining 
that if one waited long enough, 
the inquirers would no longer 
need the information, anyway. 
Houston was never guilty of the 
vice of administering too much.'" 

Changes in the Curriculum 
and Admissions 

The first task of the newly ap- 
pointed Executive Committee 
was to consider the desirability of 
revising the undergraduate cur- 
riculum. Virtually untouched 
since its original formulation, the 
curriculum still did not provide 
for the modern concept of the 
"major" and required only four 
courses in each of the junior and 
senior years for the B.A. degree. 
To keep in step with develop- 
ments at other major univer- 
sities, to broaden the curriculum. 

to give the students more experi- 
ences that would prepare them 
for the outside world and gradu- 
ate schools, and possibly to ex- 
tract more productive effort from 
the students, the Executive Com- 
mittee decided to revise the cur- 
riculum. They presented a new 
plan to the faculty in July 1946. 
The new was quite a departure 
from the old, especially for the 
first two years of study, because 
the faculty wanted to emphasize 
basic subjects such as English, 
mathematics, history, and sci- 
ence, while at the same time 
deemphasizing early specializa- 
tion. With this in mind, two 
main courses of study were cre- 
ated, academic and science- 
engineering, each having its own 
core of required subjects. When 
students were admitted, they 
usually leaned toward a tentative 
major, and that determined their 
division and their schedule for 
the first two years. The year-long 
courses were divided into three 
groups: Group A was languages 
and literature; B was history, so- 
cial studies, philosophy, and edu- 
cation; C was mathematics and 
science. Under the old curricu- 
lum. Groups A and B had been 

First-year academic students 
were required to take Math 100, 
English 100, French or German, 
American or European history, 
and a choice of Physics 100, 
Chemistry 100, or Biology 100. 
Men were required to take physi- 
cal training for one year; when 
the gymnasium was completed 
in 1951, the women also had 
compulsory physical training 
classes. Second-year students 

took either Math 200 or 210 or a 
science; English or a general liter- 
ature elective; a second year of 
the language they had begun in 
the first year; a Group B elective; 
and a free elective. 

The science-engineering curric- 
ulum did not contain as many 
choices, and it added a sixth 
course to each year. The first- 
year student took Math 100, 
Physics 100, Chemistry 100, En- 
glish 100, American or European 
history, and engineering drawing. 
The second-year student took 
20o-level courses in mathemat- 
ics, chemistry, and physics, along 
with German 100, an English 
elective, and mechanical draw- 
ing. Premedical students and 
those intending to major in biol- 
ogy took Biology 100 instead of 
Physics 100. Although science- 
engineering students took Math 
100 for three two-hour periods 
and academic students for three 
one-hour periods a week, the 
basic course was the same: trig- 
onometry, analytic geometry, and 
elementary calculus. And it was 
still required for graduation. 

For the third and fourth years 
of the academic program, a total 
of ten courses were required, at 
least one in each group in each 
year. This was later modified to 
two in each of Groups A and B 
and one in Group C, taken in any 
order. At least seven of the ten 
courses had to be advanced (num- 
bered 300 or higher), and not 
fewer than three nor more than 
five could fall in the major field. 
In 1947 academic majors were of- 
fered in business administration 
and economics, English, history, 
modern languages, philosophy. 


The 1940s 

and prelcgal studies. In 1949 pre- 
mcdical studies could be taken as 
a major in either the academic or 
science-engineering program, and 
mathematics was hsted in both 
courses of study in 19 so. 

For pure science and mathe- 
matics majors, the phin was not 
as flexible, but it did include a 
humanities elective each year. 
Otherwise the student took three 
courses in science (one outside 
the major field) in the third year, 
and two in the major during the 
fourth year. Another year of a for- 
eign language, biology, and a free 
elective completed the ten re- 
quired courses. Honors programs 
were available for both arts 
and science students, and each 
department offering them 
had its own formula for required 

Overall, the engineering curric- 
ulum was the most changed. Un- 
der the old curriculum engineers 
had taken mostly engineering 
courses, with only two human- 
ities courses and some business 
administration and economics to 
leaven the mass of math, science, 
and engineering subjects. To 
broaden the curriculum with re- 
quirements in the humanities 
and to deepen work in the funda- 
mental sciences, engineers now 
followed the scientific course of 
study for the first two years, then 
moved into the strictly engineer- 
ing courses. One aspect of the en- 
gineering curriculum, however, 
did not change. Engineering ma- 
jors had no choice of courses, ex- 
cept a humanities elective taken 
in the third or fourth year, de- 
pending on the branch of engi- 

neering in which the student was 

The degree that engineering 
students received also changed. 
Up to that time, the Rice Insti- 
tute had awarded a B.S. at the end 
of four years, and the degree of 
chemical, civil, electrical, or me- 
chanical engineer at the end of 
five. The new curriculum called 
for a B.A. degree at the end of 
four years and a B.S. in a specific 
kind of engineering at the end of 

Architects followed the aca- 
demic first-year schedule with 
the addition of an architecture 
course. The remainder of their 
curriculum was virtually un- 
changed, as was the curriculum 
for physical education majors. 

Almost all of the old courses at 
Rice were year-long and counted 
as one unit each, as they had 
from the beginning of the Insti- 
tute. The new ones continued to 
be year-long, but under the new 
curriculum semester courses 
were to be counted instead of 
whole units. As before, students 
registered in the fall for the en- 
tire year. The faculty committee 
also called for daily attendance 
records for all freshman and 
sophomore classes on the prem- 
ise that those classes were not 
"ready for freedom" in the matter 
of attendance. The spelling test 
required for graduation in 19^7 
was now a requirement for pro- 
motion and enrollment in 
courses in the junior year. 

Although the new curriculum 
was introduced in luly 1946 with 
the goal of instituting it the fol- 
lowing September, the faculty 

did not adopt it until April 1947. 
It was several years before stu- 
dents felt the effects of this 

Another change took place for 
students in the fall of 1947: ad- 
mission procedures were made 
more explicit and organized into 
a schedule. Four hundred was 
still the maximum number of en- 
tering freshmen, and fifteen the 
required number of high school 
credits, but the credits had been 
rearranged somewhat. The old 
system required three in English, 
two in algebra, one in plane ge- 
ometry, two in history, and three 
in one foreign language or two in 
two foreign languages. One to 
three credits in science were rec- 
ommended. Reflecting the times, 
as well as changes in high school 
curricula and the needs of the 
students, the new requirements 
called for four credits in English, 
two in algebra, one in plane ge- 
ometry, one-half in trigonometry, 
at least two in social studies, two 
in a foreign language (preferably 
Latin), two in science (biology 
chemistry, or physics), and one 
and one-half electives selected 
from a list of serious subjects 
ranging from botany to zoology. 
Seven of the sixteen subject cate- 
gories of the electives were in 

Personal and mental qualifica- 
tions were the new requirements 
for admission. To prove himself 
or herself personally qualified, an 
applicant had to provide a health 
certificate from the family physi- 
cian and letters of recommenda- 
tion from teachers, and also to 
have a personal interview with a 

The 1940s 


member of the Admissions Com- 
mittee or the committee's repre- 
semative. Mental quahfications 
were determined by grades in 
high school subjects, rank in the 
graduating class, and, if neces- 
sary, examinations given by the 
Institute. The majority of stu- 
dents were still admitted without 
entrance examinations on the 
basis of an outstanding high 
school record and satisfactory 
personal qualifications. Whereas 
previously students in the upper 
half of their high school classes 
were given preference, under the 
new system only those in the up- 
per twenty-five percent were en- 
couraged to apply and they were 
not guaranteed admission with- 
out examination. 

Applicants who did not have 
outstanding records but who 
were approved by the committee 
were given the chance to prove 
the adequacy of their preparation 
by taking entrance examinations 
m English and mathematics. 
The departments of English and 
mathematics wrote these tests, 
graded them, and ranked the 
grades to determine relative 
standings among the applicants. 
These results were confidential 
to the Admissions Committee; 
no applicant knew what his or 
her grade or rank was. 

The committee established 
schedules for interviews and ex- 
aminations in Houston and other 
Texas cities and set a deadline of 
March i for filling applications. 
Up to this time, the Institute had 
had no idea how many students 
would actually register in Sep- 
tember, and the new plan sought 

to correct this logistical defect. A 
student had two weeks after the 
date on the notice of acceptance 
to signify in writing his or her in- 
tention of accepting admission 
and to send in a twenty-five- 
dollar registration fee. If the stu- 
dent did not appear to register in 
September and had not so noti- 
fied the school before August i, 
the payment was forfeited.^" 

There were also changes for 
graduate students, through the 
Committee on Graduate Instruc- 
tion. No longer were a good un- 
dergraduate record and letters of 
recommendation sufficient for 
admission. Starting in 1947, the 
graduate studies committee "ad- 
vised," although It did not abso- 
lutely require, candidates to take 
the Graduate Record Examina- 
tion. The catalog stated that pref- 
erence would be given to appli- 
cants with high scores on these 
tests. As for graduate degrees, a 
number of departments offered 
Master of Arts and Master of Sci- 
ence degrees, but the Ph.D. was 
available m 1947 only in biology, 
chemistry, mathematics, and 
physics. This limitation was soon 
changed as more teachers were 
hired. ^' 

Changes in Faculty and 
Physical Plant 

The hiring of new faculty mem- 
bers began just after Houston 
took office, and teachers return- 
ing from war duty further in- 
creased the numbers. Many came 
in with, or were elevated to, a 
rank new to Rice: associate pro- 

fessor. In 1946, 16 new faculty 
members and 4 veterans arrived; 
21 more were added in 1947, and 
another 16 in 1948. In total num- 
ber the faculty reached 100 in 
1950. By that year the human- 
ities, architecture, and science 
faculties had doubled from 194 s 
figures, and engineers had in- 
creased by more than one-third. 
Architecture hired James K. Dun- 
away and A. A. Leifeste, Jr., and 
welcomed James Morehead, Jr., 
home from the war. Biology saw 
the arrival of Roy V. Talmage and 
parasitologist Clark R Read. John 
Kilpatrick and Edward S. Lewis 
joined the chemistry department, 
and chemical engineering added 
William W. Akers and Guy T. 
McBride. Other engineers in- 
cluded Paul E. Pfeiffer m electri- 
cal engineering and Hugh Scott 
Cameron and Alan J. Chapman 
in mechanical engineering. James 
R. Sims returned to civil engi- 
neering from the war. Physics 
added Gerald C. Phillips, J. R. 
Risser, and Charles F. Squire; phi- 
losophy acquired James Street 
Fulton. Hardin Craig, Jr., and 
Rice alumni Katherine Fischer 
Drew and William H. Masterson 
began teaching history. Mathe- 
matics welcomed Gerald R. Mac- 
Lane and Szolem Mandelbrojt, 
while economics added James B. 
Giles and John E. Hodges. And 
there were others.^' 

As there were arrivals, there 
were also departures. Rice inau- 
gurated a retirement plan in 1946 
that provided an option for retire- 
ment at age sixty and compul- 
sory retirement at seventy. A 
pension plan was also established 


The iy40s 

tor those faculty members who 
had accumulated years of service 
before 1946. At the end of the 
school year in May 1947, two m- 
dividuals who were campus fix- 
tures retired — Harold A. Wilson 
with thirty-five years of service, 
and Alice Dean with thirty-three. 
Miss Dean went out in style,- the 
board had finally given her the ti- 
tle "librarian" (not just "acting li- 
brarian") in 1946." 

Along with added faculty, more 
buildings were needed for offices, 
classrooms, labs, dormitories, 
and a library. The last was proba- 
bly the most important, since 
Miss Dean had done an excellent 
job of collecting. By 1947 Rice's 
150,000 library books could be 
found in nine library locations. 
The main library was on the sec- 
ond floor of Lovett Hall, with the 
history collection housed on the 
first floor and bound periodicals 
shelved in the basement. There 
were two libraries for chemistry 
in the Chemistry Building, and 
an architectural library as well; 
the physics library was in the 
Physics Building. 

To plan for a new library, a Co- 
operative Committee on Library 
Buildings was formed in 1945 
with representatives from many 
different university libraries,- in 
addition. Rice sought special aid 
from John E. Burchard, director of 
libraries at MIT in 1946. Claude 
Heaps, professor of physics, was 
the first director of the library; he 
and his faculty committee knew 
fairly precisely what they wanted. 
The argument and sentiments 
were overwhelming for consol- 
idating the scattered collections 
into one central library. The com- 

mittee wanted open stacks, but 
they also anticipated the neces- 
sity for reverting to a "semi- 
closed" stack system in the event 
that the non-Rice public abused 
their open-stack privileges. (Un- 
der the terms of the Institute 
charter, the library was to be 
open to the public.) The faculty 
also wanted reading areas of ade- 
quate size with tables and chairs, 
small faculty studies (but no fac- 
ulty offices) and student carrels 
within the stack area, and small 
rooms for seminars but not ordi- 
nary classrooms. To Burchard's 
suggestion that an outside spe- 
cialist inventory the Rice hold- 
ings with an eye to pointing out 
gaps, the committee replied that 
the faculty was satisfied with the 
old system. They perceived that 
there were very few gaps in the 
holdings in use. The old acquisi- 
tions policy considered use as the 
ultimate criterion for book ac- 
quisition, and as a result Rice 
owned few rare books and in 
certain fields had only limited 
holdings. When the need arose, 
however, the board authorized 
special appropriations to meet the 
demands of the new curriculum. 
One of the most controversial 
questions was the location of the 
library building. It was generally 
agreed that the building would be 
situated on the long central axis 
that passed through the Sallyport 
of Lovett Hall and the founder's 
statue, but how far beyond the 
statue? The architects wanted it 
on the site laid out in the original 
Cram and Ferguson plan, which 
would have put it where the soc- 
cer and band practice field is to- 
day, west of the present student 

center. Locating it there assumed 
that the school would grow tre- 
mendously and that future new 
buildings would be placed even 
farther from the main entrance. 
Proponents of this location spoke 
of the "enormous and significant 
vista." Most pragmatic faculty 
members, however, were more 
interested in how long it would 
take to walk from their offices 
to the library than in the view. 
Heaps's committee recommended 
the present location. They be- 
lieved that that site would be 
central to the Institute for some 
time to come, possibly perma- 
nently. They thought that expan- 
sion to the west would probably 
be for men's housing, athletic 
buildings, or other auxiliary func- 
tions that would not place their 
main reliance on the library. The 
site would still provide a grand, 
more than adequate view."" 

Even the generous million- 
dollar gift from Mrs. Fondren was 
not enough to cover the entire 
cost of the building as finally 
planned, so the trustees looked to 
other friends of the university for 
much of the remaining $785,000 
needed. Part of the fund drive 
focused on alumni. Since 1928 
the alumni association had been 
collecting money for a memorial 
building of offices and classrooms 
to be constructed across the 
quadrangle from the Physics 
Building. Because of the depres- 
sion and the small number of 
Rice alumni, they had not col- 
lected enough for such a build- 
ing; but in 1947 the association 
voted to earmark the accumu- 
lated funds (some S8o,ooo) for 
construction of the library. The 

The 1940s 



108- 1 10. The construction of Fondren Library. 108. June 2, 1947. 109. April i. 1948. no. luly 1. 15 

The 1940s 

1 1 1 - 1 IV The interior of the new Fondren Library. 1 1 1. Circuhition area. May 24. 1949. 112. Lecture Lounge. March 
10. 19^0. 11^. Music and Arts Lounge. March 10. 2950. 

The 1940s 


Bender bequest was also added to 
the hbrary fund/' 

In December 1947 the cor- 
nerstone for Fondren Library was 
laid with the same silver trowel 
that the trustees had used to lay 
the cornerstone for the Admin- 
istration Building in i9ri. The 
trowel was then presented to 
Mrs. Fondren. The official open- 
ing came two years later during 

Anderson Hall, a classroom 
and office building adjacent to 
the library on the Physics Build- 
ing (north) side of the quadrangle, 
was the first structure completed 
in the postwar building program. 
Opening in 1947, the building 
was named in honor of M. D. An- 
derson, whose foundation had 
given $300,000 toward the pur- 
chase of the Rincon oil field with 
the proviso already noted that 
when debts were cleared from 
that transaction, the money be 
used for some such purpose.'' 

The Abercrombie Engineering 
Laboratory opened in November 
1948. Located adjoining the Me- 
chanical Laboratory Building, it 
was designed by the firm of Staub 
and Rather, architects for the 
library and Anderson Hall. 
William M. McVey, Rice '27, 
sculpted a mural for the entrance. 
A highly stylized figure (which 
McVey called "Uncle Jupe") 
represented "man's — the engi- 
neer's — transmission and storage 
of natural energy, symbolized by 
the sun, into power for a mechan- 
ical and industrial civilization." 
McVey used dynamos, power 
lines, oil tanks, and a refinery to 
designate the branches of engi- 
neering. The Houston chapter of 

the Architectural Institute of 
America selected the laboratory 
as the best nonresidential build- 
ing erected and occupied in 
Houston during 1948.'" 

Expansion did not stop with 
these three structures. In 1949 a 
house for the president was fi- 
nally constructed on campus, a 
house that had been discussed 
since at least 1912. The Hous- 
tons had a home. A new dormi- 
tory, badly needed to alleviate 
overcrowding, also went up in 
1949 and was dedicated in 19 so 
as Wiess Hall in memory of 
trustee Harry C. Wiess, who had 
died in 1948.-"' 

Plans for a new football sta- 
dium began as early as 1947, but 
it was several years before firm 
decisions were made. During that 
time, all sorts of proposals came 
up for consideration, involving 
people not only at the Institute, 
but also at the University of 
Houston and in city government, 
and private citizens as well. In 
1948 there was much local en- 
thusiasm for a ioo,ooo-seat mu- 
nicipal stadium, in which both 
Rice and the University of Hous- 
ton would have an interest. This 
idea was abandoned for a variety 
of reasons, including reluctance 
at both schools and lack of fund- 
ing. Historically the Rice board 
had been averse to involving In- 
stitute money in projects that the 
Institute did not control. In No- 
vember 1949 the trustees an- 
nounced that Rice would build 
its own stadium.'"' 

At first the trustees had toyed 
with the idea of remodeling the 
old stadium, but they decided 
after much discussion to build a 

new one. Seating capacity for the 
new stadium was first proposed 
to be 40,000, grew to 54,000, and 
was finally settled at 70,000. To 
raise as much of the cost (esti- 
mated at more than $2 million) 
as possible from sources outside 
the university, the trustees sold 
options on seats — $200 for each 
box seat and $100 for each grand- 
stand seat, with previous season 
ticket holders and alumni having 
first choice. Trustee George 
Brown's Brown & Root Construc- 
tion Company agreed to build the 
stadium at cost to save the time 
needed to advertise for bids; work 
began promptly in February for a 
target opening date of September 
30, 1950. The final cost was 
$3,295,000. Construction on the 
stadium went on literally night 
and day, and the president began 
to receive letters from residents 
along Rice and University Bou- 
levards complaining about the 
constant noise and confusion. 
American Federation of Labor 
pickets marched in front of the 
stadium to protest Brown (S< 
Root's open shop policy and the 
company's refusal to recognize 
the unions. At one point. Rice 
students who wanted the sta- 
dium picketed the pickets. As if 
that disruption were not enough, 
construction workers came upon 
an underground stream with a 
fairly rapid flow of water. It had 
to be diverted and routed through 
conduits, as did the old "Blue 
Danube," or Harris Gully, which 
meandered across what was to be 
the parking lot. Somehow in 
spite of the crises the stadium 
opened on time. It was designed 
purely for football with no cinder 


The 1940s 

114-116. Construction of AndcT\(m Hall. 114. November 6, 1946. 115. July i, 1947. 116. December 8, 1947. 

The 1940s 



^^^^■■:^^-'' .-^^^Z''" 


117-119. Construction of Aberc Klin hic Idhtudtory 117. GrounJhrciikur.: /:/> ' • ', 1 i^. Aerial view of 
construction, December 2. 1947 (also shows Fondren Library construction and completed Anderson Hall). 119. luly 


The 1940s 

120. "Uncle Jupe." a sculpture by William M. McVey on the facade of 
Abercrombie Laboratorv. 

track separating the field from 
the stands, and it had what Jess 
Neely called "just perfect turf." 
After the opening, the task of as- 
signing seats to season ticket 
holders became problematic 
when some were not satisfied 
with their allotted locations. 
Nammg the stadium stirred up 
more controversy. The trustees 
had intended originally to call it 

Houston Stadium for the city, but 
that sounded like a municipally- 
owned stadium and seemed con- 
fusing. Neither were Rice stu- 
dents and alumni particularly 
happy to saddle their stadium 
with that name. The final deci- 
sion to call it simply Rice Sta- 
dium met with almost universal 

As much as Rice needed new 

classrooms, offices, dormitories, 
and a library, it needed a new 
Field House. The old one was 
falling down; conditions had 
reached the point where a tele- 
phone pole propped up a wall 
that was separating from the 
building. Coach Neely did not 
have to go outside to see if any- 
one was practicing on the field — 
he could just look through the 
crack in the wall. When prospec- 
tive high school athletes came to 
visit, the last place they were 
shown was the Field House. In 
1949, about the time the decision 
was made to build the new sta- 
dium, work was begun on a new 
gymnasium. The building in- 
cluded a basketball arena (the 
first one on the Rice campus), a 
swimming pool, squash and 
handball courts, offices for the 
Athletic Association and the 
physical education department, 
and facilities for women. Rice 
women could finally take physi- 
cal training courses, and fresh- 
man women now had compul- 
sory "RT," as did the men. The 
basketball court was named Au- 
try Court in honor of Mrs. James 
L. Autry (donor of Autry House), 
whose daughter, Allie Autry Kel- 
ley. Rice '2s, donated $250,000 
toward the building. (In the 
1920s, Mrs. Autry, a staunch sup- 
porter of Rice athletics, used to 
turn her house into a dispensary 
for bruised Owl players, and she 
traveled to Austin and College 
Station to cheer the teams.) The 
new Field House opened in 
19s I.'' 

The 1940s 


121. Interior view. Abercrombie Laboratory. September 1949- 

Student Concerns 

lust as the campus changed phys- 
ically in appearance, it was al- 
tered in many other ways for 
students during the 1940s. The 
war, of course, radically trans- 
formed the university. Student 
traditions of many years went 
by the wayside in the process. 
The May Fete was canceled; the 

Thresher was cut in size and 
gained its first full-time female 
editor when Marion Hargrove 
took over for her husband Jim; no 
speaker addressed commence- 
ment in 1942; and in a scrap 
drive Woofus, the mechanical 
monster from the Engmeering 
Show, was zealously added to the 
pile of metal. The band dissolved 
for a while when Kit Reid went 

to war, but student volunteers 
started it again and carried on 
through the war. Senior rings 
were available in 1943, but the 
underside of the crest had to be 
hollow instead of solid, to con- 
serve metal for the war effort. 
The Engineering Society, known 
for shaved eyebrows, strange 
coiffures, and dead fish at initia- 
tion time, was disbanded after 


The 1940s 

some "unfortunate incidents" at 
one of their welcoming cere- 
monies. No bonfires encouraged 
football players before the Aggie 
games, although the war did not 
stop the farmers from stealing 
Sammy in 1943. Corsages were 
banned for spring dances in 194s, 
because the Navy men said they 
had no money to buy flowers." 

These stringencies did not 
mean, however, that life at the 
histitute was dead. There was 
still plenty to do, including 
dances, athletic activities, club 
meetings, and cloister courses. 
As for schoolwork, the Thresher 
editor complained in 194s about 
low grades and the decline of the 
old Rice standards. Grades were 

sg "M 




122. Construction of the new Rice Stadnim. May 23, 1950. 

123. The completed stadium, with athletic director Jess Neely in the foreground. 

The 1940s 


falling, she noted, but "it is gen- 
erally accepted that Rice is an 
easier school than it was before 
the war." The war usually got the 
blame, but the editor thought 
that poor grades were due to the 
students' habitual evasion of 

When the war ended and Presi- 
dent Lovett announced in the 

spring of 1946 that the university 
would return to the old schedule 
in September, everyone breathed 
a sigh of relief. By that time fac- 
ulty and students alike needed a 
vacation from year-round classes. 
It did not take long for the Insti- 
tute to return to normal the fol- 
lowing fall. Students returning 
from the war picked up their 

studies where they had left off, in 
many cases under the same pro- 
fessor. In September 194 s the old 
practice of hazing had revived to 
include special slime clothing, 
the Slime Parade, and certain 
rules of slime conduct; persecu- 
tion was to be verbal, not physi- 
cal.'' Tony Martino continued to 
entertain students at the bonfires 
with his tenuous grasp of the En- 
glish language while he exhorted 
the team to victory. Literary so- 
ciety activities and social life re- 
sumed their hectic pace, while 
some students faced the old prob- 
lem of how to fit all their extra- 
curricular doings into a day and 
still find some time for study. 
The Rice that emerged from 
the war, however, was not the 
same as the Rice of old. A larger 
number of graduate students in- 
creased the total enrollment and 
altered the prewar ratio of gradu- 
ates to undergraduates; by 1950 
there were 150 graduate students. 
The new curriculum that was 
adopted in 1947 brought about 
change slowly and subtly, as 
those on the old curriculum grad- 
uated and each successive class 
came in under the new system. 
Another change was in the rules 
concerning scholastic proba- 
tion — rules that were a source of 
increased pressure for the stu- 
dents. Under the new system, 
students who were failing in 
their first freshman semester 
were placed on probation instead 
of being dropped from school, 
and all students were henceforth 
allowed only two probations (a 
probation lasted one semester) 
during their academic careers, in- 
stead of the previous unlimited 


The 1940s 

number. A third probation meant 
automatic expulsion. A "special 
probation" at the discretion of 
the Committee on Examina- 
tions and Standing might also be 
granted. This probation, however, 
was extremely stringent, requir- 
ing no grade of less than III dur- 
ing the period of special proba- 
tion and absolutely no academic 
difficulty thereafter. " 

By 1949 approximately thirteen 
percent of all freshmen were fail- 
ing in their first semester, and 
the faculty was concerned. Be- 
ginning in 1948, a committee 
known variously as the Commit- 
tee on the Freshman Course and 
the Committee on Coordination 
of Freshmen, chaired first by Pro- 
fessor Heaps, began to investigate 
the problems that freshmen faced 
in adapting to Rice. Committee 
members interviewed all fresh- 
man students who had failed two 
or more subjects, and they found 
many causes for poor work, rang- 
ing from inadequate high school 
preparation to homesickness. An- 
other step they took was to meet 
with the teaching assistants for 
courses that had many sections, 
in order to discuss their teaching 
methods. The graduate students 
suggested that one of the prob- 
lems lay in the emphasis placed 
on research in their own studies. 
There was not much incentive 
for good teaching, they said, and 
they did not have adequate time 
to prepare for the classes they 
were teaching. The assistants 
also said that they wanted to 
meet with department heads and 
the faculty in charge of freshman 
sections to learn more about de- 
partment policies, standards, 

methods, and requirements. As a 
final measure in its investigation, 
the committee sent a question- 
naire to members of the fresh- 
man class to determine whether 
certain courses were demanding 
more than their proper share 
of time. Analysis indicated that 
the average science-engineering 
freshman spent fifty-five hours a 
week in study, classes, and labo- 
ratory, while the representative 
academic student spent forty-four 
hours. The committee members 
thought that that was about the 
right amount of time, although 
perhaps the science-engineers 
were putting in a bit more than 
was desirable. 

In its report, the committee 
speculated on the reasons why so 
many students were on proba- 
tion. They listed the following 
possibilities: an inadequate selec- 
tion process for admissions; poor 
teaching; a belief on the part of 
the faculty that awarding low 
grades indicated high standards; 
an actual raising of standards by 
the faculty, so that even able 
students could not make good 
grades. Even after they had stud- 
ied admission procedures, how- 
ever, the committee could not 
reach a judgment about the qual- 
ity of freshmen, nor could they 
identify which of the possible 
causes accounted for the high 
failure rate. They considered ad- 
ministering aptitude tests to 
freshmen and issuing brief sug- 
gestions about how to study; 
they also discussed the question 
of more faculty-freshman com- 
munication and guidance, cau- 
tioned against a rigid curve grad- 
ing system in any class, and 

asked the faculty for further sug- 
gestions. Concerning a request 
that academic students have spe- 
cial sections of Math 100 and 
Physics 100 (the two courses that 
failed more freshmen than any 
others), Hubert Bray of mathe- 
matics and Claude Heaps of 
physics "maintained a somewhat 
intransigent attitude toward 
these proposals."' 

The following year, the same 
committee sent out another 
questionnaire, this time survey- 
ing those on probation. When 
few replied, the committee again 
interviewed the students. Those 
who had replied to the question- 
naire were more inclined to 
blame their failure on poor high 
school training than on any other 
cause. Of those whom the com- 
mittee questioned personally, 
however, most appeared unable 
to do creditable work in a college 
such as Rice, "no matter how 
much help and advice is given 

As in the previous year, the 
committee concentrated on the 
admissions process and on the 
quality of freshman students as 
the causes of so many freshman 
difficulties. The remedy for 
Rice's freshman "unsuccess" lay 
in obtaining a "higher type" of 
freshman to begin with, the com- 
mittee concluded. That, however, 
depended on having a very large 
number of applicants from which 
to choose, and the number was 
declining in 1950. The Institute 
had competition from free state 
institutions, which gave well- 
recognized degrees without the 
amount of work that Rice re- 
quired, and Rice had made no 

The 1940s 


particular effort to publicize what 
it had to offer. Also, there were 
not many Rice alumni teaching 
in the public schools who might 
be able to mfluence better stu- 
dents to apply to the Institute. In 
addition, the postwar era was a 
prosperous one, when the ab- 
sence of tuition was not as great 
an advantage as it once had been. 

The committee was in a quan- 
dary. Administering tests such as 
those of the College Entrance Ex- 
amination Board might aid m 
picking the best of the appli- 
cants. On the other hand, if Rice 
were compelled to accept almost 
any high school graduate who ap- 
plied simply to keep the enroll- 
ment figures up, the tests would 
be moot. If the faculty abandoned 
a selective admissions process 
and high standards for freshmen, 
then Rice's traditional high stan- 
dards for all students would fall, 
as well. "The time has come," 
the committee concluded, "when 
we must face the fact that efforts 
will have to be made to attract 
students to Rice." 

"Under these circumstances," 
the committee wrote to the 
Committee on Examinations and 
Standing, "our Committee feels 
that the Institute can continue to 
maintain its high standards only 
if Its attitude toward its freshmen 
is one of well-considered rather 
than of mechanistic legality. The 
student must be made to feel that 
he is getting more help, wiser in- 
struction, more personal consid- 
eration, more exact understanding 
of his problems at Rice than he 
could get at any of those other 
universities that offer easier 
courses and more automatic 

degrees than Rice offers." The 
committee then requested that 
the rules of special probation not 
be applied to freshmen who were 
readmitted after failing their first 
year. Examinations and Standing 
denied the request, maintaining 
that freshmen had a full year to 
make the adjustment to college 
and that readmission on special 
probation helped foster a favor- 
able mental attitude in the 
student. Past experience showed 
that such readmitted students 
improved markedly. 

In response to a report by the 
Committee on the Freshman 
Course, the faculty offered com- 
ments of their own. Hardin Craig 
drew attention to the "bedevil- 
ment of freshmen" and the bad 
effects to be expected from fre- 
quent extracurricular activities of 
doubtful value. When committee 
member Trenton Wann indicated 
that students were in favor of 
faculty guidance but wanted 
more extensive participation by 
the faculty. President Houston 
pointed out that such faculty in- 
volvement was an integral part of 
teaching. Admissions director 
McCann cautioned against rigid 
rules for uniformity in grading, 
but Edwin Wyatt was in favor of 
the curve. George Williams, an- 
other member of the committee, 
mentioned the difficulty of deter- 
mining precise number grades m 
humanities courses and ventured 
the opinion that the large num- 
bers of low grades might be in- 
dicative of poor teaching. The 
faculty minutes do not record 
any answer to his observation. 

The committee made some 
efforts to help both students and 

faculty. They sent the freshmen 
suggestions on how to study and 
solicited suggestions for teaching 
from both faculty and teaching 
assistants in the various depart- 
ments. How the "unfit" got into 
Rice still needed an answer, but 
in the meantime the committee 
called for an active counseling 
program for freshmen and a re- 
written section on probation in 
the General Announcements. Ac- 
cording to some students, the 
section was so confusing that 
they had no idea that they were 
on probation until someone told 

The problems of high failure 
rates and large percentages of stu- 
dents on probation did not go 
away, however, even when the 
number of applicants increased. 
It remained to be seen what 
effect these conditions, the new 
curriculum, and the admissions 
policy would have on students. 
The forlorn little figure studying 
for finals with a candle burning 
on his head made his first ap- 
pearance in the Threshei in May 
1949.'" More than thirty years 
later, he is still resurrected at the 
end of every term. 

Problems concerning the honor 
system resulted in a new consti- 
tution in 1948 and elicited much 
discussion. Faculty and students 
generally agreed that the system 
had been weakened during the 
war. According to a Thresher re- 
porter, the honor system had 
worked well for thirty years until 
the advent of the Navy program 
on campus. The Navy's "out- 
spoken refusal to believe m 
or promote an honor system" 
caused problems, he said. What- 


The 1940s 

ever the reason, it was clear that 
students needed more expHcit 
rules and procedures. The new 
constitution prohibited deliberate 
proctormg by the instructor; it 
allowed the student to leave the 
room during examinations solely 
for personal reasons, and ar- 
ranged students in alternate rows 
and alternate seats for exams if 
possible. The pledge and signa- 
ture were required on all exam- 
inations and whatever other work 
the instructor desired, as they 
had been from the beginning of 
the Institute. The constitution 
established a trial procedure and 
specified a minimum penalty of 
suspension for a semester plus 
the uncompleted portion of the 
semester in which the conviction 
was made.'" 

Student Activities 
in the 1940s 

Not all the changes that took 
place were so serious or far- 
reaching. The first female cheer- 
leader, Betty lean "Foxie" Fox, 
was elected in 1946, thereby 
destroying a twenty-five-year-old 
tradition that yell leaders had to 
be male. Drum majorettes also 
joined the band in half-time 
shows. To replace the not-much- 
lamented Owl, a magazine called 
RI was published under the spon- 
sorship of the English depart- 
ment and sought articles that 
would appeal to alumni, faculty, 
and the general public as well as 
to students. The first Rondelct 
replaced the May Fete and 
showed off a king and queen at 
the ball in 1947. The Senior Fol- 

124. The 1946 cheerleaders, mcludin;^ Betty lean "Foxie" Fox. the first female 
veil leader at Rice. 

lies, a student-written play sati- 
rizing life at Rice and outside the 
campus, saw the light of day in 
1949. In 1948 the alumni associa- 
tion opened a placement service 
for job-hunting students and 
graduates, thereby eliminating 
the need for professors to write 
more than one letter of recom- 
mendation per student.' 

Campus clubs found that their 
activities came under the juris- 
diction of the new assistant dean 
for student activities, Hugh S. 
Cameron, and his Committee on 
Student Activities. Cameron met 
with the clubs' officers to reiter- 
ate old policies and make some 
new ones. All clubs' books would 
be audited and their publications 

The 1940s 


supervised; clubs had to bring 
their constitutions up to date, 
submit them to the dean, and for- 
mulate a calendar of club events. 
"The policy of the Dean of Stu- 
dent Activities," said Cameron, 
"is to have faith in the students, 
but once the students break that 
faith, they will never be given an- 
other chance. "'^' 

One set of organizations — the 
literary societies — survived the 
war in full strength. They were 
still the closest thing to soror- 
ities that were allowed on cam- 
pus and had, if anything, become 
even more sorority-like and ex- 
clusive over the years. After 
much discussion of pseudo- 
aristocracy and democracy, a new 
society — the Sarah Lane Literary 
Society — was formed in 1947, 
named after the adviser to women. 
Expanding the number of women 
involved in the organizations ap- 
peared to put more flexibililty 
into the system. Opening it up 
even more was the dean's proviso 
that in the future any ten women 
who wished to form a literary so- 
ciety be allowed to do so. After 
the Sarah Lane Literary Society 
was established, about half the 
women enrolled at Rice were 
members of a "lit." 

In 1950 when Betty Rose Dow- 
den (wife of English professor 
Wilfred Dowden) became adviser 
to women, she decided to combat 
the discrimination still being 
shown by the societies and en- 
listed Dr. and Mrs. Houston on 
her side. Although some mem- 
bers protested, four new liter- 
ary societies were created: the 
Chaille Rice Literary Society, the 
Olga Keith Literary Society, the 

Mary Ellen Lovett Literary So- 
ciety, and the Virginia Cleveland 
Literary Society. Any woman 
with satisfactory academic stand- 
ing was eligible and was in fact 
guaranteed membership in a so- 
ciety, although it might not be 
the one she most wanted. Strict 
rules were drawn up for rush, and 
a complicated procedure was de- 
vised for final placement into the 
clubs. The two committees that 
had handled women students' is- 
sues and activities, the Literary 
Council and the Women's Coun- 
cil, were merged, with provision 
for one member to represent 
those women not affiliated with 
any literary society. Except for 
that one representative, indepen- 
dents continued to have no orga- 
nized voice in women's activities 
on campus." 

The Thresher editor in 1950 
did not care much for either the 
new system or the old one, say- 
ing that the literary societies had 
long been dedicated to the princi- 
ple that It was a good thing to 
belong to a group that not every- 
one could belong to. Some of the 
students countered that they 
hoped for better representation, 
communication, and in general a 
stronger position for women on 

Although the organizations 
were criticized for their insen- 
sitivity in rushing, the resultant 
hurt feelings, and for the non- 
democratic environment they 
fostered, they served at least one 
important purpose. They brought 
together a scattered group of 
women, for whom very few facil- 
ities, and in some cases little en- 
couragement, existed on campus. 

Town students, both male and fe- 
male, missed a great deal of col- 
lege life and the education that 
accompanied it. The men had 
been somewhat better off in this 
respect after they had been re- 
quired to spend at least one year 
in the dormitory, but that rule 
had not been repromulgated after 
World War II. For some town 
students, college was not very 
different from high school, ex- 
cept for the level of instruction. 
Through the 1940s, Rice was still 
primarily a man's school, with 
women enrolled. Although sev- 
eral women were listed as fellows 
and assistants in the instruc- 
tional staff and students regarded 
them as faculty members, no 
woman became an assistant pro- 
fessor until the 19SOS. Even Miss 
Dean, who taught Math 100 for 
years, was titled only a "fellow in 
mathematics," in addition to 
being acting librarian before 
1946. The only woman to whom 
the female students could turn 
was the adviser to women, who 
was not a faculty member nor 
considered important enough to 
be listed as a member of the ad- 
ministration in the front of the 
catalog unil 1952. The literary so- 
cieties helped fill some of the 

If the "lits" were not very liter- 
ary neither was the Rally Club 
much of a "service organization" 
by the postwar period. The club 
was as close to a fraternity as 
could be tolerated at Rice, with 
membership by invitation. It did 
perform whatever services the 
dean might require, such as 
parking cars at various campus 
functions, but the members 

1 64 

The 1940s 

do not seem strenuously to have 
searched out ways to help others. 
They were well known for their 
parties and for their initiation 
practices, reminiscent of the 
rites of the defunct Engineering 

Hazing, although stopped com- 
pletely by the Navy takeover, 
was resurrected after the war. 
Like most other activities, it also 
changed, picked up a new name, 
and showed up in a different 
guise. Most of the old rules were 
revived in 1946, but the freshmen 
did not seem much interested in 
being hazed. The Thresher com- 
plained that there were few par- 
ticipants for the freshman shoe 
scramble during half time of the 
football game and claimed that 
the freshmen showed gross lack 
of sportsmanship. "Another such 
exhibition by the Freshmen or a 
continuation of the present atti- 
tude of them would make certain 
the present doubt as to their hav- 
ing qualities desired of students 
of Rice Institute," the editor 

To remedy this appalling situa- 
tion, a new program was insti- 
tuted the next year under the 
name "guidance." Its purpose was 
to instill better school spirit and 
to assure freshmen of the oppor- 
tunity to participate in all school 
activities. Traditional rules were 
in effect, ranging from wearing 
beanies and red suspenders, to at- 
tending pep rallies and games 
without dates, to not having hair- 
cuts until after Thanksgiving. 
Dorm slimes had special duties, 
involving cleaning the rooms of 
upperclassmen and running er- 
rands for them. Punishment for 

infractions of the rules could in- 
clude standing at rigid attention, 
buttoning up shirts all the way to 
the neck, and wearing suspenders 
and ties every day. In charge of 
this program was a Guidance 
Committee of sophomores." 

This guidance program lasted 
about a year, until the Thresher 
and others began to complain and 
to ask questions. The editor 
thought that the announced pro- 
gram for 1948 was more fitting 
for fraternities, and he did not 
like forcing freshmen to parrot 
school history and other informa- 
tion as the Aggies did. Spirit 
should not be formalized, he said. 
"Rice student spirit, at its best," 
the editor maintained, "means an 
appreciation of individuality, the 
depreciation of 'masses.'" There 
was also the question of the 
Guidance Committee's authority 
and its source. The dean of stu- 
dent activities gave students the 
impression that he did not want 
to hear about any hazing; while 
he said that the Guidance Com- 
mittee was responsible to him, 
he did not establish the commit- 
tee or know of its legal right to 
exist. The Student Council dis- 
claimed any knowledge of its es- 
tablishment under the Student 
Association and set up another 
committee to investigate the pro- 
gram. However, their investiga- 
tion found no serious objections 
to the guidance activities. 

In May 1949, after much dis- 
cussion on campus in Student 
Council meetings and in the 
Thresher, the Student Council of- 
fered the students a referendum 
on a bylaw that would establish a 
Guidance Committee and pro- 

gram. Both sides had a chance to 
put forth their views. On the one 
hand were those who approved 
hazing, including the physical 
type such as broomings. Those 
students claimed that it was the 
driving force in the guidance pro- 
gram, that it unified the class, 
brought the freshmen down off 
their high-school pedestals, was 
good practice for the "licks" a 
person had to take in life, that it 
was good to suffer once in a 
while, and that no permanent 
damage was done. On the other 
hand were those opposed not 
only to physical hazing but to 
any kind of extreme personal hu- 
miliation that might be involved 
in it. This side eschewed forced 
conformity and the psychological 
as well as physical effects of haz- 
ing. The Student Council passed 
a resolution condemning physi- 
cal hazing and personal humilia- 
tion, although there was enough 
student sentiment to pass a by- 
law establishing the Guidance 
Committee by a large majority. 
After more complaints about 
hazing the next fall, crude explo- 
sive devices were detonated in 
front of the house of two of the 
complainers, Raymond Lankford 
and Farrell Fulton. Finally, in the 
aftermath of this excess, the 
campus returned to normal. A 
certain amount of hazing went 
on as before, there was talk of the 
"voluntary" nature of guidance, 
and the Slime Parade and rules 
continued. Revived in 1948 or 
1949 was the practice of kidnap- 
ping the sophomore class presi- 
dent before the sophomore dance, 
and the week before the party be- 
came known as Hell Week. Hell 

The 1940s 


Week soon had its own rules and 
regulations, but it would be a 
short-lived and tragic tradition."" 

Hazing or no hazing, one of the 
rites of passage for freshmen was 
attendance at football games 
to yell for the team. Rice fans 
had much to cheer about in the 
1940s. Coach Neely had barely 
had a chance to get settled into 
his position as head coach and 
athletic director before the war 
started and took most of his play- 
ers into the armed forces. Prac- 
tically the only player left from 
the 1 94 1 team was Charles 
Malmberg, who, although 4-F 
because of his eyes, was still 
strong enough to become an All- 
Conference team choice m 1942. 
When the Navy took over the 
campus, however, they let their 
V-12 and ROTC students partici- 
pate in the sports programs of the 
school, and Neely made up his 
teams with them. He remembers 
the next few years as some of the 
most interesting he ever knew. 
Those who showed up to play 
lacked outstanding ability, but 
they had interest, determination, 
and a lot of heart, and "they 
worked like Trojans," Neely 
said. The Southwest Conference 
played a full schedule, and with 
every school making up their 
teams with whomever happened 
to be there, the unexpected could 
happen and often did. In 1942 
Texas beat Rice 58-0, and sports- 
writer Morris Frank asked as- 
sistant coach loe Davis if he 
thought Neely would mind if 
Frank offered a comment that 
Rice would probably not enter- 
tain a bowl bid that year. Neely 
replied that he did not think 

125. Rice defeated Texas /le'M m this 1946 football game, 27-10. 


126. Another victoiy over A&^M. 28-6 (1948). 

1 66 

The 1940s 

127. Freshman track team, 1C/47-4S. 

The 1940s 


much of Frank's humor. The next 
year, however, with the same 
team against some of the same 
Texas players, the score was 7—0 
with Rice on top. In 1944 in Aus- 
tin the Owls won again, 7-6. 
Neely says that he probably 
got more satisfaction out of 
those two games than almost any 

With players such as Weldon 
Humble, Carl Russ, 1. W. Magee, 
loe Watson, James "Froggy" Wil- 
liams, Ralph Murphy, and Paul 
Giroski, Rice was a team to con- 
tend with in the postwar forties. 
In 1946, with many of the prewar 
players back on the field, Rice 
tied for first place in the con- 
ference with Arkansas and went 
on to the Orange Bowl. On New 
Year's Day 1947 the Owls de- 
feated the Tennessee Vols 8-0. 
Once Rice was leading, Neely 
played very conservative football 
that day, and when some criti- 
cized the lack of excitement in 
the game, it is rumored that the 
Rice coach said that if they 
wanted to see a circus, they 
should have gone to Sarasota 
(where Ringling Brothers had 
their winter quarters). In 1949 
Rice was ranked fifth in the na- 
tion, won the conference outright 
with a record of nine wins and 
one loss, and defeated North Car- 
olina in the Cotton Bowl."^ 

In those years, tickets for Rice 
games in the old 38,000-seat sta- 
dium were at a premium, and 
scalpers were asking and getting 
as much as twenty dollars per 
ticket in 1948 for sellout games 
such as those against Texas and 
SMU. A drive against ticket scal- 

pers that year netted arrests of a 
San Antonio doctor, an Austin 
insurance man, an Austin golf 
pro, and three University of 
Texas students. The new stadium 
relieved the pressure. A Neely 
edict solved another very differ- 
ent problem. To protect the play- 
ing field from unnecessary wear, 
no hooved animals would be al- 
lowed on the Bermuda grass turf. 
That included Bevo, the Univer- 
sity of Texas's steer mascot. 
Flowever, neither the coach nor 
the university could solve the 
problem of fans who came over 
from Louisiana to see the Rice- 
LSU game. On their way home, 
many were stopped for speeding 
by officers of the Texas Depart- 
ment of Public Safety. They 
would often write Coach Neely 
to complain of this treatment and 
ask why Neely and Rice did not 
"educate" these patrolmen on be- 
half of the Louisiana boosters. 
Neely usually replied that he was 
sorry, but he had no jurisdiction 
over the police.'" 

Basketball teams also fared 
well through the 1940s, first un- 
der coach Buster Brannon (1939- 
1942) and then Joe Davis (1943- 
1949), winning the conference in 
1940, 1942, 1943, 1944, 1945, and 
1949. From 1941 to 194s, a Rice 
Owl was always on the All- 
American list. Bill Closs was 
named to the roster once, and 
Bob Kinney and Bill Henry both 
twice. The Rice track team con- 
tinued to win individual con- 
ference championships with Fred 
Wolcott, Bill Cummins, Bill 
Christopher, Augie Erfurth, 
Harry Coffman, and Tobin Rote. 

And tennis starred Bobby Curtis, 
Jack Rodgers, Chick Harris, and 
Jack Turpin."' 

By 1950, the future for Rice 
looked very bright. The campus 
was expanding in both numbers 
of faculty members and numbers 
of buildings. The new president 
had steered through some much- 
needed reorganization of the 
administration, and the new cur- 
riculum was calculated to produce 
the kinds of students, occupa- 
tions, and knowledge that the fu- 
ture would require. Although the 
primary emphasis was still in the 
sciences and engineering, the 
new curriculum called for expan- 
sion in the humanities. That ex- 
pansion would bring the Institute 
ever closer to the ideal of Edgar 
Odell Lovett's 1912 vision: 

Accordingly it is as a university 
that the Institute proposes to 
begin, a university of liberal and 
technical learning, where liberal 
studies may be studied liberally 
or technically, where technical 
subjects may be pursued either 
technically or liberally, where 
whatever of professional training 
is offered is to be based as far 
as possible on a broad general 


A Decade of Growth: The 1950s 

Much to their dehght, the board 
announced in 1950 that most of 
the goals of the long-range pro- 
gram adopted in 1945 had been 
accomplished, five years ahead of 
schedule. The Institute had ex- 
panded the board, increased the 
number of faculty and provided 
raises m salary and benefits for 
them, added ninety-one semester 
courses to the curriculum, con- 
structed a number of new build- 
ings (including a library, a 
gymnasium, and a president's 
home on campus), and lowered 
the student-teacher ratio to 
twelve or thirteen to one. Real- 
ization of these aims did not 
mean that the trustees would 
rest on their laurels. The board 
wanted further improvement of 
the salary scale, an increase in 
faculty to reach and maintain a 
student-teacher ratio of ten to 
one, expansion in research ac- 
tivity, library development, more 
graduate and undergraduate 
scholarships, a higher enrollment 
(about 2,000), and more buildings 
to house and teach the larger 

number of students and to pro- 
vide research facilities for both 
faculty and students. Three 
million dollars in gifts had 
helped accomplish the goals set 
in 1945, but even more money 
was needed for the future.' 

In 195 1 estimated annual ex- 
penses for Rice amounted to 
more than $1.6 million, and by 
1954 the university was spending 
more than $2 million a year. 
Most of the revenue came from 
income on investments; the rest 
came from student fees, research 
contracts, donations from alumni, 
and some income from restricted 
funds. By 1959 the Institute had 
more than $91.5 million in assets 
(including a physical plant valued 
at more than $28 million), in- 
come of more than $4.7 million, 
and expenditures of more than 
$4.3 million. In the decade from 
1947-48 to 1958-59, the Rice 
Institute burgeoned from a small 
educational operation with a bud- 
get of approximately $1 million 
to a complicated business with a 
quadrupled budget. Contrary to 

uninformed opinion, the univer- 
sity did not have excess money. 
The board still carefully watched 
all expenditures, as it had from 
James Baker's time, and it was 
looking for new sources of in- 
come and generous donors.' 

Reorganizing the Board 

Since at least 1947, board mem- 
bers had discussed increasing 
their own number and using help 
from outside. In September of 
that year, while discussing new 
accounting procedures and the 
relocation of the business office, 
board chairman Harry Hanszen 
had proposed that the Finance 
Committee be reorganized and 
enlarged. He suggested a commit- 
tee of five or six, with three trust- 
ees and two or three outside 
members.' Harry Wiess picked 
some alumni to help on his 
Building Committee and also fa- 
vored expanding the number of 
trustees, but the board took no 
formal action then. A year later 

The 1950s 


it was clear that the board, 
especially its chairman, was 
overworked. Hanszen had been 
devoting almost full time to the 
Institute's affairs, and his ne- 
glected personal activities were 
demanding his attention to such 
an extent that he was considermg 
resigning from the board. Harry 
Wiess had just died, and George 
Brown, looking after invest- 
ments, had more work than one 
person could manage. In fact, the 
affairs of the Institute had be- 
come so complicated that the 
seven-man board could not han- 
dle them adequately as a com- 
mittee of the whole or by sepa- 
rate committees made up only of 

In a memorandum to the other 
members, Lamar Flemmg pro- 
posed that board members dele- 
gate authority and responsibility 
to standing committees compris- 
ing both trustees and nontrust- 
ees. The innovation was not 
unattractive; mixed committees 
would enable the board to enlist 
the community's service for the 
Institute. Fleming suggested the 
Harvard plan, whereby trustees 
maintained legal ownership and 
responsibility as the charter dic- 
tated, but brought in others as 
members of the Board of Over- 
seers (or officers with some other 
title) to sit with the trustees, vote 
equally with them, and serve on 
the various committees.* 

In August 1949 the board 
acted. First the trustees asked 
J. Newton Rayzor to fill the va- 
cancy created by Harry Wiess's 
death; after Rayzor accepted, 
they voted to expand to a fifteen- 
member Board of Governors. The 

new board consisted of the seven 
trustees, who still held legal 
ownership of the Institute, and 
eight governors, each of whom 
served a term of four years and 
was selected by a majority of the 
trustees. (The governors had no 
vote in their selection.) Terms 
were staggered so that every year 
two new governors were ap- 
pointed, and the "term members" 
were ineligible for reappointment. 
When his term had expired, a 
governor became a governor 
adviser and continued to advise 
the university. The chairman 
of the Board of Trustees also 
chaired the Board of Governors, 
and committee chairmen were 
usually trustees. The first eight 
governors were Robert R Do- 
herty Harmon Whittington, 
Walter L. Goldston, John S. Ivy 
Herbert Allen, L. E. Garfield, 
Francis T Fendley, and Robert H. 
Ray. The first committees estab- 
lished under the new plan were 
the Finance Committee, the Oil 
Committee, the Buildings and 
Grounds Committee, and the 
Alumni and Student Activity 

After George Brown became 
chairman of the board in Febru- 
ary 1950 and John Ivy was named 
to Hanszen's place after the lat- 
ter's death, membership of the 
Board of Trustees changed only 
twice from 1951 to 1963. Freder- 
ick R. Lummis retired in 1955 
and Gus Wortham in 1961. To 
their places were named cotton 
expert Harmon Whittington 
and oilman Daniel R. Bullard, 

One of the primary goals of the 
new board was to seek additional 

sources of funding for the Insti- 
tute. To be sure, funds for special 
purposes had come to the school 
from various sources. In 1950 
Sallie Shepherd Perkins donated 
funds to endow a school of mu- 
sic, but it was several years be- 
fore the income from her gift 
grew sufficiently to maintain 
more than a lectureship and a 
few courses in music. Olga Keith 
Wiess endowed a chair of geology 
m memory of her husband Harry 
in 1952, and in 1954 she gave 
still more to construct a building 
with a laboratory for a depart- 
ment of geology. In 1953 trustee 
J. Newton Rayzor established a 
chair in philosophy and religious 
thought; Rayzor also wanted to 
see a chapel on campus. In the 
same year the Masterson family 
began the endowment of a chair 
of history in memory of Harris 
Masterson, Jr., the chaplain to 
Autry House. And in 1958 Mrs. 
Reginald Henry Hargrove do- 
nated funds for a chair of eco- 
nomics in memory of her hus- 
band, a Rice alumnus of the class 
of 1918." 

A New Emphasis on 
Fund Raising 

Such donations as endowed 
chairs and bequests, like the part 
of the Hanszen estate that the In- 
stitute received, were always ap- 
preciated; but more money was 
necessary on a regular basis to 
fund continued expansion and to 
cover expenses of the enlarged 
educational program. It was clear 
that the university had to make a 
vigorous effort to attract donors 


The lysos 

and solicit funds from many 
sources if it was to continue to 
operate on its expanded scale. In 
195 ^ the board began seriously to 
consider soliciting contributions. 
The Baker board had been reluc- 
tant to request funds outside of 
the Rice community because of 
possible strings attached to any 
donations; in contrast, the new 
board looked to thriving postwar 
Houston for aid. 

In 19s 3 Harmon Whittington's 
Development Committee recom- 
mended a program to attract in- 
fluential friends for Rice, and the 
board created the Rice Institute 
Associates in 1954- The purpose 
of this group was "to provide a 
channel for the free exchange of 
ideas between the students and 
teachers of the Institute and a 
group of representative citizens 
who have been influential in 
civic, cultural, and educational 
affairs of the region." Members 
would also advise the Institute 
on its development and help 
increase its service to the com- 
munity. Membership in the Asso- 
ciates came by invitation, and 
some alumni who had worked for 
Rice's interests through the years 
were disappointed not to receive 
one. Newton Rayzor suggested 
forming a parallel group to be 
known as the Rice Alumni Asso- 
ciates, but the board decided in- 
stead to invite the alumni to join 
the group that was already con- 
stituted. The membership pledge 
was $10,000, paid at the rate of 
$1,000 per year. 

The Institute also turned to in- 
dustry as a source of funds. In 
1955 the board established the 
Rice Institute Research Sponsors 

and solicited support from se- 
lected companies at the rate of 
$10,000 per year for a three-year 
period. President Houston used 
this discretionary fund to train 
graduate students in research 
methods, to support new re- 
search, and to purchase research 
equipment. The program also 
provided business contacts and 
served to inform companies 
about the research being done on 
campus. Research Days, when 
representatives of the sponsors 
came to campus to see where 
their money was going, were 
great successes." 

Throughout the 19SOS Rice 
also received various monetary 
grants. Companies began to sup- 
port research and students in 
many more ways than through 
the Research Sponsors program, 
and Rice benefited from grants 
and scholarships from such com- 
panies as Union Carbide, Shell 
Oil, Superior Oil, DuPont, and 
Monsanto. The United States 
government also awarded funds 
for research and fellowships. 
Many private individuals and 
smaller firms established scholar- 
ships and fellowships as well, 
and by 1959 there were seventeen 
graduate fellowships and seventy- 
two undergraduate scholarships 
funded by these individuals and 
corporations (many of them mul- 
tiple awards) and given out under 
Institute auspices. These totals 
do not include noninstitutional 
awards, such as the Atomic En- 
ergy Commission Fellowships, 
made directly to students by or- 
ganizations outside the campus.' 

One of the continuing goals of 
the board was to raise faculty sal- 

aries, and for that purpose in 
19s s the Ford Foundation awarded 
two grants to the Institute, an 
Endowment Grant and an Accom- 
plishment Grant. The Endow- 
ment Grant had to be invested 
and only its income used for sal- 
aries for a period of ten years, 
after which both principal and 
income were open to any educa- 
tional use. The Accomplishment 
Grant could have been used di- 
rectly, but the board voted to 
treat it as an endowment also. By 
1957 the Ford Foundation had 
given the Institute more than 
$1 million under these grants, 
and Rice was better able to com- 
pete with other schools for good 

Growth in the 

Increased donations, programs, 
and grants helped to realize the 
board's goals, but an enlarged and 
more complicated Institute also 
meant that the administration 
had to expand to handle the in- 
creased load. Faculty committees 
could take some of the burden, 
but the administration itself grew 
slowly yet steadily. 

A number of administrative 
changes took place in 1950. Dean 
Harry B. Weiser retired and re- 
turned to teaching chemistry, 
and in his place President Hous- 
ton appointed Professor George 
Holmes Richter, Rice '26, an- 
other chemist. Hugh S. Cameron, 
dean of students, died suddenly 
during the summer, and Pro- 
fessor Guy T McBride, a chemi- 
cal engineer, became associate 

The I9SOS 


dean of students that fall. Why 
McBride was named associate 
dean and not dean, as Cameron 
had been, is something of a mys- 
tery, but his title is usually ex- 
plamed by the tradition that 
there should be only one dean 
at Rice, the dean of the Insti- 
tute. When McBride left in 19S8, 
lames R. Sims became adviser to 
men, an office that despite its 
name retained the duties of a 
dean of students — disciplinarian 
of the campus. Sarah Lane left 
the office of adviser to women, 
which she had occupied since 
1 93 1, but remained on the library 
staff. That office saw a procession 
of occupants during the 1950s: 
Betty Rose Dowden (wife of Pro- 
fessor Wilfred Dowden of the En- 
glish department), Clara Margaret 
Mohr Kotch (Rice '51), Paula 
Meredith Mosle (Rice '52), and 
Nancy Moore Eubank (Rice '55). 
There were also several assistants 
to the president during Hous- 
ton's tenure: lames Morehead, 
William H. Masterson, lohn Par- 
ish, and Thad Marsh." 

Three men who had become 
institutions at Rice left the uni- 
versity during the fifties. William 
Ward Watkin died in 1952, John 
T. McCants retired in 1953, and 
Samuel G. McCann retired in 
I9S7- These three figures had 
probably done as much on cam- 
pus as Edgar Odcll Lovett had to 
keep Rice operating smoothly, 
and they were certainly known 
personally to many more stu- 
dents and teachers than any 
president could be. It took a num- 
ber of people to replace them. 
Changes in the accounting sys- 
tem and movement of the busi- 

ness office onto campus had 
altered greatly the duties of the 
bursar. No longer did he have in- 
dependent control over all money 
spent and purchases made. The 
bursar's functions were distrib- 
uted among several different sec- 
tions. McCann had been both 
registrar and director of admis- 
sions. In 1953 he became director 
of admissions only, while J. D. 
Thomas was appointed acting 
registrar and Michael McEnany 
assistant registrar. In 1954 McEn- 
any became registrar. James B. 
Giles became admissions director 
in 1957. Watkin had filled a num- 
ber of posts, including chairman 
of the Committee on Outdoor 
Sports, curator of buildings, and, 
during the war, civil defense 
chairman, in addition to building 
the architecture department. His 
activities were split among a 
number of people." 

In 1953 a new position was cre- 
ated in the administration. The 
board and the president had been 
looking for someone to head the 
new geology department that 
Mrs. Wiess had established in 
honor of her late husband. They 
settled on Carey Croneis, who 
was at that time president of Be- 
loit College in Beloit, Wisconsin. 
Croneis was to be both Harry 
Carothers Wiess Professor of 
Geology and provost of the Insti- 
tute. As professor of geology, his 
duties were clear — teaching, con- 
tinuing his research, and super- 
vising and developing the new 
department. As provost, his re- 
sponsibilities were vague. Presi- 
dent Houston wrote Croneis that 
his duties would be worked out 
in practice and would concern 

the interests of the Institute as a 
whole. Croneis would begin by 
serving on the Executive Com- 
mittee and helping to improve 
Rice's public relations. It appears 
that chairing the Executive Com- 
mittee and acting as goodwill 
ambassador for the Institute 
composed the greater part of 
the provost's duties; academic 
matters were handled by the 
dean and the president. A superb 
speaker, the popular Croneis rep- 
resented the Institute very well." 

In place of the four men who 
had run the Institute under Edgar 
Odell Lovett, there were eleven 
listed as officers of administra- 
tion in the 1956 General An- 
nouncements: they included an 
assistant to the registrar, the bur- 
sar, and the development assis- 
tant, in addition to the president, 
assistant to the president, pro- 
vost, dean, associate dean, ad- 
viser to women, director of 
admissions, and registrar. While 
this may seem to be a significant 
increase and might imply a high 
degree of organization, that was 
not necessarily the case. Rice was 
still a highly personal institution 
where matters were handled di- 
rectly without the intrusion of 
memoranda and complex organi- 
zational tables. In fact, when a 
faculty committee attempted in 
19s 3 -54 to answer a Carnegie 
Foundation questionnaire on 
higher education, it found mak- 
ing up a normal organizational 
chart practically impossible. 
There were no "channels" to 
speak of. Confusing though that 
might have been to outsiders, it 
worked for Rice at the time.'-' 

In 1955 the duties of depart- 


The 1950s 


128. Carey Croneis. at various times professor of geology, provost, acting 
president, and chancellor of Rice. 

ment chairman were specifically 
stated and entered into the fac- 
ulty minutes for the first time. 
These duties included the prepa- 
ration of a departmental budget 
and recommendations for promo- 

tions. President Houston pointed 
out that the chairman had full re- 
sponsibility for the department, 
but he who occupied the chair 
was not necessarily to be re- 
garded as chief scholar within 

the department. Houston also 
thought that it was desirable to 
rotate the chairmanship from 
time to time.'* 

New Faces on the Faculty 

During the lysos a number of 
faculty members made their first 
appearances on campus. In archi- 
tecture David Parsons and Ander- 
son Todd came, and in chemistry 
Ronald Sass and Richard B. Tur- 
ner, while chemical engineering 
hired two Rice alumni, Sam H. 
Davis and Riki Kobayashi. John 
Merwin joined civil engineering, 
John H. Auden, economics, and 
John A. S. Adams, geology. Many 
will remember Jackson Cope, the 
poet and novelist James Dickey, 
Thad Marsh, and John B. Pickard 
from their English classes, and 
Andrew Muir, William Nelson, 
and Frank Vandiver in history. 
Franz Brotzen and James Wilhoit 
went to mechanical engineering 
and Konstantin Kolenda and 
Niels Nielsen to philosophy. 
Harold Rorschach and Calvin 
Class joined the physics depart- 
ment, as did Andrew Bryan, Rice 
'18, who returned from the busi- 
ness community to the campus. 

In I9s8 the fournal of Southern 
History, the scholarly publication 
of the Southern Historical Asso- 
ciation, moved to Rice, and in 
i960 the English department 
started a new quarterly. Studies 
in English Literature: isoo- 
igoo. edited by Carroll Camden.'" 

E.xpansion of departments was 
a continuous activity in the 
1950s, but it was by no means an 
explosion. About forty people 

The 1950s 


were added to the faculty from 
1950 to 1959, with the numbers 
spht fairly evenly among the hu- 
manities, the sciences, and engi- 
neering. The new element was an 
expansion m liberal arts. In 195 1 
the administration announced 
that the aim of the university 
was "to raise the liberal arts and 
humanities to the level of excel- 
lence and breadth of coverage 
now enjoyed by the sciences," 
and it set about developing a pro- 
gram to do so. The library's ac- 
quisition of new resources for the 
liberal arts also made possible 
more and better courses. Except 
for a single doctorate in history 
awarded in 1933, the only higher 
degrees in the humanities offered 
by the Institute had been mas- 
ter's degrees in history, English, 
philosophy, German, the Ro- 
mance languages, and architec- 
ture. In 1951 Rice was able to 
offer doctoral programs in history 
and English. In 1954, to attract 
more students to the humanities, 
the Board of Governors estab- 
lished scholarships amounting to 
$300 each for fifteen freshmen in 
liberal arts."" 

By 1959 the faculty was of such 
size and the departments of such 
complexity that two more ad- 
ministrative positions were cre- 
ated, with the dual purposes of 
further developing graduate pro- 
grams and making the under- 
graduate departments more effec- 
tive. William H. Masterson of the 
history department was named 
dean of humanities, and LeVan 
Griffis from the Borg-Warner Cor- 
poration became dean of engi- 
neering. Richter remained dean 
of the Institute. The duties of the 

new deanships included acquisi- 
tion of new faculty, adjustment of 
salaries and academic ranks, and 
distribution of office space, labo- 
ratories, equipment, and the like,- 
but the positions were not solely 
administrative. Houston expected 
these men to teach and carry on 
research as well. 

Also in 1959, the Executive 
Committee was expanded and re- 
named the Faculty Council. This 
council was composed of the 
president, provost, dean of the In- 
stitute, deans of humanities and 
engineering, and six members 
elected by the faculty (two each 
from humanities, engineering, 
and science). The committee 
would continue to advise the 
president on matters of policy 
and curriculum. With these 
changes the administration began 
to respond to the more compli- 
cated institution that Rice had 

The 1950s Building Boom 

More students and faculty needed 
more buildings, and Rice's build- 
ing boom continued in the 1950s. 
The first of the new structures 
was opened in 1953; it housed a 
six-million-volt Van de Graaff ac- 
celerator. In 1963 this building 
was named in honor of Professor 
Tom Bonner, who died in 1961. 
It was built to the north of the 
physics amphitheater, across 
the street. Not long after that, 
plans were made for two lab- 
oratory buildings, an audito- 
rium, a student center, and more 

The laboratory buildings, one 

for geology funded by a gift of $1 
million from the daughters of the 
late Harry Wiess, and one for bi- 
ology financed by a donation 
from the M. D. Anderson Foun- 
dation, were located on the west- 
ern side of the secondary axis 
running north-south between the 
men's dormitories. That axis 
would terminate on the north 
with a new auditorium. In Ham- 
man Hall, built with a gift from 
the George and Mary Josephine 
Hamman Foundation, the Insti- 
tute finally gained a real stage for 
music, drama, meetings, and lec- 
tures. The new buildings opened 
in 1958 and 1959. Architect for 
all three was George F. Pierce, Jr., 
Rice '42, and his firm of Pierce 
and Pierce. For the stairwell of 
the Keith-Wiess Geological Labo- 
ratories, David Parsons, Rice's 
resident artist, created a metal 
mobile sculpture entitled Uni- 
verse. For the walls of the biology 
building Parsons molded a num- 
ber of bricks with intaglio de- 
signs representing the various 
phyla of animals."' 

While the biology and geology 
laboratories were being built, 
across the street to the south of 
them a student center and chapel 
complex was under way. Trustee 
J. Newton Rayzor had been lob- 
bying the board for a chapel since 
at least 1949. In 1953 he had sug- 
gested constructing some sort of 
multipurpose building to house a 
chapel and the Shepherd School 
of Music, and possibly the Hous- 
ton Symphony Orchestra as well. 
Other board members agreed 
with Rayzor that a chapel was 
needed, but they thought that 
one structure would not be 


The 1950s 

129. A view of Rice's Van de Graaff particle accelerator- 
column, with the pressure tank removed. 

■the high voltage 

^ enough for the three activities. 
They decided that the chapel 
should be considered as a sepa- 
rate project. 

In May 1 9 s 4 Rayzor had pointed 
out again that a chapel was one 
of the most urgent needs on cam- 
pus. Later that month, Dr. Hous- 
ton reported on a meeting of a 
committee that was planning a 
memorial to the students and for- 
mer students who had died in 
service to the country. He stated 
that, while no one favored a me- 
morial monument by itself, there 
was much enthusiasm for a stu- 
dent union building dedicated to 
those lost. Representatives of the 
class of 1955, which had lost 
eleven of its members in a naval 
airplane crash in 1953, indicated 
a special interest in such a me- 
morial. Further discussion, both 
of a chapel and student religious 
center and of a memorial student 
union, resulted in the merging of 
the two. The Rice Memorial Stu- 
dent Center was designed by Har- 
vin C. Moore, Rice '27; its cor- 
nerstone dedicated the center as a 
memorial for "the students of 
Rice who have brought honor to 
the Institute through their contri- 
butions to the welfare of man- 
kind and of those who have given 
their lives in the service of our 

Certain questions arose in 
connection with the planning of 
a chapel and a student union. 
The Institute, after all, had been 
"aggressively non-sectarian" (to 
quote Cram, Goodhue and Fergu- 
son) from its inception, and the 
committee studying the center's 
proposed uses and the activities 
to be housed there had much to 

The 1950s 


discuss. Their decisions were 
compHcated by the need to deter- 
mine exactly how the student 
union would be used, now that it 
was definite that a residential 
college system would replace the 
student dormitories (see pp. 178- 
187). The Committee on Student 
Housing that was studying the 
college system did not think that 
a bookstore, a cafeteria, and of- 
fices for student associations, 
publications, and alumni should 
be in the same building as a 
chapel. Even the structure's loca- 
tion and the possibility that such 
a center would distract attention 
from the colleges came under dis- 
cussion. Eventually the center 
was placed in a line with the new 
biology and geology buildings. It 
took the form of a courtyard 
closed on three sides by the stu- 
dent center itself, a cloister with 
offices opening onto it, and the 
chapel. Located within the center 
were the campus store, Sammy's 
(the snack bar that replaced the 
small and very crowded Roost 
next to the old campus store in 
the basement of the library), vari- 
ous offices for student groups and 
alumni, and a large ballroom. = ' 
Funds came from Mr. and Mrs. J. 
Newton Rayzor, from the book- 
store surplus, and from alumni. 

Opening in 1958, the Rice Me- 
morial Student Center was not 
an instant success but rather an 
instant failure. Students com- 
plained immediately: it was too 
far from normal activity areas, 
especially the dormitories and 
the library; it was too sterile 
(considering the state of the old 
Roost in the Fondren Library 
basement, anything merely clean 

130. The Keith-Wiess Geological Laboiatoiy. April 14, 1958. 

131. Construction of Hamman Hall, i957- 


The 1 9 SOS 

132. Hamman Hall, a view of the nearly completed building. April 14. igsS. 

nv Architect Harvin C. Moore's plans for the Rice Memorial Student Center 

The 1950s 


134. Construction of the Rice Mcnional Stiulcnt Center. 

1 3 s • Interior view of the book^ 

tore m the student center shortly after it 

would have looked sterile); there 
was nothing to do there and no 
one to see, and the addition of 
some Ping-Pong tables, a pool 
table, and a television set to the 
barren, concrete-floored base- 
ment did not attract many. The 
center did have its uses, though. 
Graduate students, faculty, and 
nonresident undergraduates of- 
ten ate lunch and played bridge 
there, and various groups used 
the Grand Ballroom for dances 
and meetings. But the remote 
RMC did not supplant the Sally- 
port or the library lounge as the 
place on campus to meet people." 
Other small physical changes 
were made in 1957. Dr. Lovett's 
gravel walks were paved over 
with pebble concrete sidewalks, 
the roads were paved, and the 
traffic pattern changed drasti- 
cally. Partly at the instigation of 
board governor f. T Rather, Jr., 
the board decided to make the 
campus more conducive to walk- 
ing than it had been. For a year or 
so before the asphalt was laid, 
barricades were erected across 
several roads through the middle 
of the campus to prevent auto- 
mobile traffic. Many students 
protested the alteration of their 
familiar traffic routes, and from 
time to time someone would 
blow up one of the barricades 
with an explosive charge. By the 
time new landscaping was com- 
plete, the road running between 
the third entrance on Main Street 
and the Mechanical Laboratory 
had been blocked at its junction 
with the south part of the cam- 
pus loop road. The academic 
quadrangle had also been closed 
to all vehicles, and the parking 


The 1950s 

lots in front of the Mechanical 
Lab and Lovett Hall had been 
eliminated in favor of spacious 
lawns. Although new parking 
lots were opened, they were not 
sufficient; convenient parking 
places were soon at a premium, 
and some of those who did not 
like to walk took up bicycling." 

As badly needed as new class- 
rooms and laboratories, perhaps 
more so, were renovated dormito- 
ries. With the exception of Wiess 
Hall, all of the dormitory build- 
ings dated from the first days of 
the Institute and were in dilapi- 
dated condition. Doors had been 
kicked in and never repaired, 
walls needed new paint, electric 
wires hung haphazardly, bath- 
rooms had out-of-date and often 
inoperative plumbing, and very 
little was clean. In addition, the 
dormitories were extremely over- 
crowded. Freshmen especially 
were crammed three to a room — 
usually a room that scarcely held 
two, that had only one closet, 
and that provided no study space 
at all. In 1952, 631 students oc- 
cupied the space normally meant 
for 551. Students and faculty 
alike compared life in these com- 
munities to living in a zoo. The 
practice of hazing flourished, and 
any intellectual endeavor was 
considered by some to be strictly 
accidental. Nothing could have 
been further from Edgar Odell 
Lovett's concept of the Rice 
residential halls as gentlemen's 
clubs. '^ 

The shabby physical condition 
of the dorms was due partly to 
student negligence and partly to 
Institute neglect. Once damage 
had been done to a room and not 

repaired, the successive inhabi- 
tants had felt little responsibility 
for careful treatment, so that the 
buildings deteriorated progres- 
sively. The deplorable housing 
situation was the culmination of 
several factors. Dormitories had 
been severely overcrowded before 
Wiess Hall was built in 1947; al- 
though the new dorm alleviated 
the strain somewhat, subsequent 
growth in enrollment had can- 
celed out the gain. Furthermore, 
the new five-year engineering 
curriculum had added approx- 
imately fifty students a year to 
the dormitory load. Not only 
were more students being admit- 
ted, but a higher percentage were 
from out of town. The postwar 
growth of the University of Hous- 
ton attracted many of the gradu- 
ates from Houston high schools 
who in the past would have 
looked to Rice, thus relieving 
pressure on the Institute to act as 
the sole institution of higher 
learning for Houstonians. That, 
plus the actions of several groups 
connected with the Institute, in- 
cluding the faculty, encouraged 
young people from out of town 
and out of state to apply to Rice. 
Considering the pressure of dorm 
life, hazing, and the distractions 
of other extracurricular activities, 
it was no wonder that freshman 
grades suffered." 

Vitally interested in alleviating 
the dormitory situation were the 
associate dean of students, Guy 
T McBride, and the chairman of 
the board, George R. Brown. In 
1953 Brown stated that the most 
important project for the Devel- 
opment Committee was to in- 
crease dormitory facilities, and 

the board committees on grounds 
and buildings and on alumni and 
student activity met to investi- 
gate the construction of addi- 
tional housing. McBride had 
talked to Dr. Lovett and read 
what Lovett had written in The 
Book of the Opening about the 
residential college system; he 
then wrote a memorandum to 
President Houston proposing that 
Rice embrace the college system 
to improve not only the physical 
conditions within the halls but 
the intellectual conditions as 

The Residential College 

Lovett had envisioned a system 
of residential colleges at Rice like 
the one Woodrow Wilson had 
planned for Princeton, which 
adapted the English residential 
college to American undergradu- 
ate life. Unlike the British mod- 
els, colleges at the Institute 
would not have any fundamental 
educational responsibility; that 
belonged to the Institute itself. 
Instead, they would offer educa- 
tion of a more informal nature: 
intellectual stimulation, fel- 
lowship, competition, social 
activities, democratic self- 
government. By the 1950s several 
schools — Harvard University, 
Yale University, the California In- 
stitute of Technology, and a few 
others — had residential colleges, 
some quite different from the 
others, some with only subtle 
differences. The nature of Rice's 
system remained hazy." 

The 1950s 


After a committee under the 
chairmanship of governor Her- 
bert Allen had thoroughly stud- 
ied the costs for new dormitory 
and dmmg facilities under a col- 
lege system, the board adopted a 
program in September 1954- New 
dormitories for 225 men and 100 
women would be constructed; 
the program stipulated that hous- 
ing for 125 more men would be 
built, once there was sufficient 
demand. There was no rush to 
complete the scheme; the board 
wanted it to be carefully planned 
and executed. They expected 
completion with occupancy in 
1956-57. As it turned out, plan- 
ning and construction took every 
bit of the time allotted.'" 

To formulate a plan for the or- 
ganization, administration, and 
supervision of the colleges. Dr. 
Houston appointed a faculty- 
student Committee on Student 
Housing with Dean McBride as 
chairman. It included faculty 
members from a number of de- 
partments, along with the adviser 
to women, representatives from 
the Student Council, and a new 
group, the Women's Hall Com- 
mittee. J. Newton Rayzor at- 
tended several meetings and 
worked closely with the commit- 
tee. Members of the board and of 
the committee traveled through- 
out the United States to visit 
schools with college systems. Of 
primary interest were those at 
the California Institute of Tech- 
nology and Yale University, but 
the committee also visited such 
schools as Wellesley College, 
Radcliffe College, and Harvard 

Planning the colleges involved 

elements from the elevated to the 
trivial, from discussions of what 
constituted a college and how to 
build "collegiate homes for hu- 
man living" to the proper dress 
for the college lobby or breakfast. 
The committee reached some 
conclusions quickly. They de- 
cided that certain factors charac- 
terized a college: group living and 
dining, traditions, student gov- 
ernment, continuity, a master in 
residence, group social affairs, 
and athletic and intellectual 
competition. Committee mem- 
bers also identified two "deficien- 
cies" in the typical Rice under- 
graduate that they hoped the 
colleges would remedy: "a lack of 
a sense of social concern; not just 
a vague sympathy but rather an 
informed sense of responsibility 
in the spheres of community ac- 
tion, from the family unit to af- 
fairs of national global scope. . . 
[and] a deficiency in broad intel- 
lectual curiosity.""" 

In line with these observations, 
the committee decided that cer- 
tain provisions should be built 
into the system. A large dining 
room and a lounge would allow 
student gatherings, especially for 
that most important reminder of 
the college's unity, the daily meal 
shared by all residents at one 
time. These implied buildings of 
a certain size and configuration. 
To place responsibility on the 
student wherever possible, a 
strong student government would 
be established in each college to 
initiate and maintain social and 
intellectual activities, competi- 
tions, and traditions, as well as to 
enforce discipline. The commit- 
tee hoped to correct the other de- 

ficiency noted in its report by 
encouraging increased intellec- 
tual contact with teachers out- 
side the classroom; both married 
and unmarried faculty members 
would reside in the colleges. A 
study by the faculty Committee 
on Educational Inquiry had re- 
vealed that students thought con- 
tact with the faculty outside the 
classroom had usually proved 
unpleasant, although they still 
desired it. Perhaps natural in- 
formal interaction in a domes- 
tic environment would be more 

The committee had an am- 
bitious program for the system. 
They wanted an atmosphere like 
that of Lovett's "gentlemen's 
club," a home away from home. 
They wanted to foster maturity 
in the students, as well as a sense 
of responsibility for the welfare 
of the group and the individual. 
They wanted to provide an en- 
vironment conducive to discus- 
sion of ideas and suitable organi- 
zation for the development of 
student leaders. They hoped that 
the colleges would make a posi- 
tive contribution to the students' 

In its basic deliberations on the 
college system, the committee 
originally considered establishing 
only four colleges (based on the 
four existing dormitories), and 
these were to be only for men. 
The planned women's dormitory 
had its own problems, but at the 
beginning of its study the com- 
mittee concentrated on the men's 
facilities. That the Institute fi- 
nally established a women's 
college at the same time is due 
largely to the efforts of trustee 


The 1 9 SOS 

]. Newton Rayzor and two suc- 
cessive advisers to women, Clara 
Margaret Mohr Kotch and Paula 
Meredith Mosle.'= They con- 
vinced the others that if Rice was 
going to have a workable college 
system, the arrangement needed 
to apply to everyone on campus 
from the beginning. 

The number of students resid- 
ing in each college was fairly well 
determined by the existing dor- 
mitories. East, South, and West 
Halls housed no students and 
Wiess housed 220, so it was ob- 
vious from an architectural stand- 
point that college size should be 
some multiple of no. The com- 
mittee decided that 220 would be 
ideal, because that number was 
small enough to be responsive to 
a single master but large enough 
to include all types of students 
and thus maintain a democratic 
college and campus. (The com- 
mittee wanted to avoid any sem- 
blance of exclusivity or a fra- 
ternity atmosphere about the 
colleges.) It finally recommended 
to the board a building program 
that provided for four colleges of 
220 students each, using Wiess 
Hall as one and increasing the 
size of the other three. This total 
of 880 was 105 more than the ini- 
tial board plan but within the 
eventual total number that the 
board had in mind. The commit- 
tee was certain that the addi- 
tional places would not go empty, 
as there was already considerable 
demand from town students to 
live in the dorms. ' 

Essential for the success of the 
system, the committee thought, 
were the master and his wife, be- 
cause they would be the primary 

ones responsible for achieving 
the goals of social concern and 
intellectual curiosity. It was there- 
fore important to choose the 
masters with great care; the com- 
mittee recommended that they 
be chosen from the ranks of full 
professors. Although the commit- 
tee originally thought that mas- 
ters, faculty fellows, and student 
officers would handle disciplin- 
ary matters, the final report em- 
phasized that masters were not to 
be thought of as disciplinarians. 
Fellows were left out of the pro- 
cess altogether. As in the first 
dormitories, the students them- 
selves were to be responsible for 
discipline, though serious infrac- 
tions would be dealt with, as 
they always had been, by the 
dean of students. The master re- 
tained overall responsibility for 
student life in his college, but his 
mam duties were to counsel stu- 
dents, provide an example, and 
advise student committees. The 
committee further recommended 
that each master be provided 
with a house next to his college 
but physically separated from it. - 
Other faculty members were to 
be associated with the colleges, 
either as residents or nonresi- 
dents. Called "fellows" at first, 
these people soon came to be 
known as "faculty associates." 
The committee saw the associ- 
ates' function as stimulating in- 
tellectual and cultural interests 
and advising the students and 
master when asked to do so. 
They were to join a college by 
invitation from the master and 
college members, and the com- 
mittee recommended that each 
college have at least fifteen non- 

resident and two to four resident 

Most decisions could be made 
simply, but the committee spent 
a number of meetings discussing 
how a freshman would join a col- 
lege. At first a separate dormitory 
was envisioned for freshmen, 
who would then join a college in 
their sophomore year after com- 
petition among the colleges for 
"desirable freshmen." Militating 
against this idea were the cost of 
such a facility in addition to the 
planned expansion of the colleges- 
to-be, and the fraternity-like 
atmosphere that such compe- 
tition would engender. The 
committee investigated moving 
freshmen from one college to an- 
other during the year and allow- 
ing them to choose one at the 
end of that time, but the clear 
disadvantages in such upheavals 
soon shelved that proposition. 
Even inviting freshmen to dine at 
other colleges before they made 
their final decision seemed too 
much like fraternity rushing. Fi- 
nally the committee decided to 
assign freshmen arbitrarily to the 
colleges upon admission, guaran- 
teeing them the right to request 
one transfer (but no college could 
invite such a transfer). Masters 
and associates were to make the 
assignments after consulting the 
student college officers, taking 
care to distribute students by ma- 
jor and geographical section of 
the country to avoid any con- 
centration in one college. An in- 
coming freshman could ask for 
placement in a certain college, 
but he was not guaranteed that 
his request would be granted. In 
the placement system that was 

The 1950s 


finally adopted, a new student 
was allowed to request the col- 
lege in which a brother was en- 
rolled, and two freshmen friends 
could request assignment to- 
gether but could not designate a 
specific college. The committee 
was determined to provide a bal- 
anced environment in which in- 
dividuals could find new friends 
from all geographical regions and 
from all academic fields.'" 

Although there was an early 
suggestion that town students 
have a college of their own cen- 
tered around a student union, the 
committee decided in the end 
that all town students and trans- 
fers were to be assigned to col- 
leges in the same manner that 
out-of-town students were. They 
would have all the rights, privi- 
leges, and responsibilities of resi- 
dent college members, with a few 
exceptions concerning certain 
college offices. The committee 
also hoped that town students 
would eat meals at their col- 
leges, especially on those special 
evenings designated as College 

Endeavoring to resolve as many 
details as possible for the colleges 
before they opened, the commit- 
tee set up two subcommittees on 
student activities. One recom- 
mended appropriate social and 
sports activities and even told 
college officers to survey their 
members before formulating final 
plans. (The committee included a 
planning schedule for the first 
year.) The other subcommittee 
wrote a model college constitu- 
tion, which established a repre- 
sentative government in a college 
Cabinet with executive, legisla- 

tive, and judicial duties. The 
Cabinet was to meet regularly, 
supervise all the various college 
activities and committees, and 
control room assignments.'" 

If a college system was impor- 
tant for the men, it was equally 
important — perhaps more sig- 
nificant — for the women. From 
the beginning of the Institute, 
women had usually been left to 
find their own housing. They 
could often obtain lists of reputa- 
ble boarding houses or rentable 
rooms from Mr. McCants' office 
or from the adviser to women, 
but otherwise they had to fend 
for themselves. Many boarded 
with the families of present or 
past Rice students, or lived at 
home. Partly because of these 
conditions, most women stu- 
dents at Rice were from Houston. 
In 195 1 only 65 of the 300 women 
enrolled were from out of town. 

That year the adviser to women, 
Betty Rose Dowden, recom- 
mended that the Institute con- 
vert some of Its property into 
housing for female students. The 
Institute had bought a block of 
apartments on Banks Street in 
1948, originally intending to pro- 
vide housing facilities for faculty; 
postwar housing had not kept 
up with Houston's population 
growth, and new professors had 
found housing difficult during 
their first years at Rice. By 195 1 
the housing shortage had eased, 
and some of the Banks Street 
apartments were vacant; Mrs. 
Dowden wished to use them for 
women. The board agreed, and 60 
young women moved into the 
apartments under the watchful 
of Margaret Dunn, the house- 

mother. Curfews were estab- 
lished — the women had to be in 
by 11:30 P.M. on weekdays and 
2;oo A.M. on Saturday nights — 
and neither liquor nor men were 
allowed in the apartments. 

After the committee decided to 
include the proposed women's 
dormitory in the college system, 
the members realized that the 
number of women who desired 
housing would greatly exceed the 
number of spaces in the new dor- 
mitory. Paula Meredith Mosle, 
who was adviser to women in 
1955, was authorized to find 
some additional temporary hous- 
ing. She discovered that the Town 
and Country Apartments on 
HMC Street were willing to lease 
several units to the school. Clara 
Morrow was housemother for 
the accommodations there, from 
which a bus transported so 
women back and forth to classes. 
Security in both apartment houses 
left a great deal to be desired, and 
more than one mother must have 
wondered what she was leaving 
her daughter to after seeing the 
facilities. However, the women 
came back; and by 1955, 124 out- 
of-town women were among the 
355 female students enrolled.'" 

In May 1955 the Committee 
on Student Housing presented its 
second interim report, this one 
on residence halls for women. For 
a number of reasons, the com- 
mittee had not initially planned 
for a women's college. For one 
thing, only one residential unit 
was to be built, housing only 100 
women. That meant that there 
could be no competition between 
colleges for members, as was 
originally planned for the men's 


The 19 SOS 

136. The Banks Street apartments for Rice women. 

colleges. Since the dormitory 
would house only one-third of 
the female student population, 
the committee thought it impos- 
sible to define an absolute center 
of women's college life. The new 
dormitory would instead provide 
a sound basis for a residential 
campus system once more dor- 
mitories for women were built. 

In the minds of the committee 
members, the existence of "strong 
female social organizations," the 
literary societies, also negated 
the need for immediate college 
facilities for women. While the 
committee, which was all male 
except for the incumbent adviser 
to women and Sarah Lane, was 
unwilling to let any hint of frater- 
nities into the men's colleges, it 
is interesting that they ignored 
the societies' resemblance to so- 

rorities, which could be as divi- 
sive among the women as frater- 
nities among the men. Once the 
committee decided to assign 
freshmen arbitrarily to colleges, 
the first reason for excluding 
women from the college system 
was no longer valid; but the 
second impediment, the cost of 
building a dormitory for 220 
women instead of the 100 autho- 
rized by the board, remained. 

College or not, the creation of 
a women's residence hall necessi- 
tated answering other questions 
that had not arisen regarding the 
men's dormitories. First, its site 
had to be established. Some on 
the committee favored a location 
between the President's House 
and Abercrombie Laboratory; 
others recommended a spot be- 
tween Cohen House and the Gate 

Number 2 entrance off Mam 
Street. The board decided instead 
to place the dormitory between 
the President's House and Sunset 
Boulevard. There was more space 
on that side of the campus for 
future expansion of facilities 
that would eventually house 440 

While it seemed to be taken for 
granted after McBride's original 
memorandum that each men's 
college would have a master, the 
motion that the women's halls 
also have a master and family liv- 
ing nearby was not introduced 
and passed until May 195s. In its 
interim report, the committee 
stated Its strong belief in the im- 
portance of the master and his 
family to the women's hall en- 
vironment; it also recommended 
that "an unmarried woman of 
faculty status" live in the wom- 
en's dormitory. At that time, of 
course, the women's residence 
hall was not yet designated a col- 
lege, and there was no unmarried 
woman of faculty status to serve 
as hall resident.^ Such a woman 
would have to be hired first. 

As early as February 1955 the 
committee agreed that accom- 
modations for 200 women would 
be better than the 100 autho- 
rized. Women's applications 
were expected to increase, and 
the committee wished to pre- 
serve the existing ratio of men to 
women in the student body. But 
money was allotted for only one 
dormitory unit. In November 
195 s Houston Endowment, Inc., 
gave the Institute funds for a 
women's dormitory to be known 
as the Mary Gibbs lones College 
for Women, in honor of Mrs. 

The 1950s 




137. Construction of Mary Gibbs lanes College, March 5. 1957. 

Jesse H. Jones. From that point 
on, women students had an equal 
place on the Rice campus. 

Not long afterward, in July 
1956, the board voted to name 
the men's colleges in honor of 
some of the Institute's major ben- 
efactors. East Hall became James 
A. Baker College, South Hall be- 
came Will Rice College (after 
William M. Rice, Jr.), and West 
Hall became Harry Clay Hanszen 
College. Wiess Hall had already 
been named for Harry C. Wiess.-' 

Dr. Houston finally appointed 
masters for the various colleges, 
and true to Rice tradition, none 
of them knew that the president 
had him in mind until Houston 
made the offer. The men chosen 
were William H. Masterson, pro- 
fessor of history, for Hanszen; 
James Street Fulton, professor of 
philosophy, for Will Rice; Roy V. 
Talmage, professor of biology, for 
WiesS; Carl R. Wischmeyer, asso- 
ciate professor of electrical engi- 

neering, for Baker; and Calvin M. 
Class, associate professor of phys- 
ics, for Jones. The new masters 
were at a disadvantage in that 
they had not taken part in any of 
the Committee on Student Hous- 
ing's planning, but they had the 
committee's report. Although 
much of it seemed unrealistic to 
at least one master, the report 
was better than nothing.'' 

In March 1957, after room as- 
signments, briefings, and elec- 
tions, the students moved into 
their colleges. The administra- 
tion had decided to inaugurate 
the system in the spring instead 
of waiting until fall, because con- 
struction had progressed so well. 
Certain shortages still existed, 
however, and the women in Jones 
Hall had almost no furniture for 
about six weeks. 

Some rules and customs ap- 
plied to all colleges, both men's 
and women's. No visitors of the 
opposite sex were allowed in the 

rooms of any college except dur- 
ing Sunday Open House, and all 
colleges had a seated evening 
meal, served family style, with 
freshmen as waiters. In addition, 
the women were governed by 
some rules that applied only to 
them. They had strict require- 
ments for dress in the Commons 
and lobbies; Rice was still a very 
dressy school for women. They 
also had a curfew. The hours es- 
tablished for the apartments, 
1 1:30 P.M. weekdays and 2:00 
A.M. on Saturday night, were re- 
tained. Restrictive though these 
hours seemed to some, they were 
quite liberal for the 1950s and for 
the state. (Most Texas colleges 
required their women students to 
be in much earlier.) Rice went 
from one extreme to another con- 
cerning women's housing rules. 
Earlier, no women lived on cam- 
pus; soon a women could not live 
off campus outside her parents' 
home without the Institute's 

The introduction of the college 
system brought about a political 
revolution on campus. Until 
1957 student affairs had been 
handled by the class organiza- 
tions, but the classes clearly had 
little place in the colleges. When 
the Campanile announced in 
February 1958, during the first 
full year of the system, that stu- 
dents' pictures would appear 
with their colleges instead of 
their classes, protest resulted in 
a referendum in which the col- 
lege arrangement won by a slim 
margin. Confhct between the 
Student Council and the Inter- 
College Council followed soon 
after, and again the college sys- 

138. A 1917 vicw ui tiiL RiLL iu-.iiUiU lii'iinitones. which became colleges in I9?7. Left to right: Hanszcn College 
Iformerly West Hall), Will Rice College iSouth Hall). Baker College Commons torigmallv the dining area for all the 
dormitories), and Baker College Iformerly East Hall}. 

tern won. After a fierce cam- 
paign, students passed a new 
constitution for the Student 
Association that created a Stu- 
dent Senate composed mostly of 
college officers. The Senate com- 
prised executive officers elected 
campus-wide, along with the 
freshman class president, the five 
college presidents, and two other 
representatives from each college. 
Class officers were still elected 
each year, but they had little to 
do beyond arranging a few social 
activities. "'■ 

Although the final report ot the 

Committee on Student Housing 
stated specifically that masters 
were not to be thought of as dis- 
ciplinarians, practice did not al- 
ways conform to theory. College 
discipline was a gray area. Prece- 
dent laid the keeping of order 
first in the hands of the Hall 
Committee (now the college gov- 
ernment) and then with the dean 
of students. The master's respon- 
sibility was vague. No one really 
knew what a master was sup- 
posed to do. When President 
Houston asked William H. Mas- 
terson to become master of Hans- 

zen, the professor asked what a 
master did. "I don't really know," 
Houston replied, "whatever you 
find useful." The lack of clearly 
defined responsibilities some- 
times resulted in conflict be- 
tween a master and the dean of 
students (whatever his title). 
While James R. Sims was adviser 
to men, he considered anything 
that occurred outside a college to 
be his province, and anything in- 
side the college to be the mas- 
ter's province. It appears that 
jurisdictions were not finally ad- 
judicated until 1963, when a 

The 1950s 


139. Wiess College, construction substantially completed. Janu 

'ary j. i9<;o. 

memorandum from President 
Pitzer to masters and deans de- 
lineated the responsibihties and 
interrelations of the masters, 
the dean of women, and the dean 
of students. For their mternal 
order, the colleges developed 
their own judicial systems and in 
1962-63 created an Inter-College 
Court to handle disputes be- 
tween colleges." 

Including off-campus college 
members m the new organization 
proved to be difficult. At first 
there were many upperclassmen 
who were uninterested in their 

assigned colleges and who did 
not take part in their activities. 
An increase in college-sponsored 
social activities and a change in 
attitude as new students entered 
an established system helped 
somewhat, but the colleges did 
not find the key, if any existed, to 
attract and hold the interest of 
nonresident students. 

A 1 96 1 Thresher review of the 
college system after four years 
pointed out the lack of inter- 
college competition in academic 
endeavors. President Lovett's 
dream of debating societies never 

materialized. Hardly anyone paid 
attention to which college had 
the most scholarships, the best 
grade average, or the fewest stu- 
dents on probation. Any competi- 
tion was usually athletic — or, as 
in the case of the Rondelet fes- 
tivities, musical in the Song Fest 
and a combination of athletic and 
alcoholic in the Beer-Bike Race." 
Faculty associates found them- 
selves in limbo, since their func- 
tion and their relationship to the 
students had not yet been defined 
clearly. Although the designers of 
the college system intended for 

1 86 

The 1 9 SOS 

the interaction between students 
and associates to stimulate intel- 
lectual activity, some associates 
seemed to he as tongue-tied in 
talking to students as the stu- 
dents were in conversing with 
professors. At any rate, associates 
usually had only a social relation- 
ship with their colleges, a passive 
role rather than the active one 

Perhaps intellectual life in the 
colleges suffered because some 
students actively resisted it. Oth- 
ers were too tired from every- 
thing else they had to do to sit 
down at a table and discuss mo- 
mentous issues, ideas, and ideol- 
ogy. Considering all the academic 
study required, many undoubt- 
edly wanted a respite from brain 
work. Some did not wish to ex- 
pose their ignorance in the pres- 
ence of the associates, even in 
informal conversations. Besides 
(the argument ran), did stimulat- 
ing intellectual discussions help 
you get a job? 

Like students the world over, 
those at Rice liked to complain 
about their work load. Looked at 
even dispassionately, the aca- 
demic requirements at Rice in 
the i9>os seemed designed to 
weed out the unfit. Fueled by 
anxiety among nonathletes about 
their own standing, resentment 
grew at the so-called double stan- 
dard for athletes. Rumor had it 
that the athletes (mostly physical 
education majors, not those tak- 
ing a "regular" schedule) had spe- 
cial help, special grading, and 
special courses, and that they did 
not measure up scholastically to 
other Rice students. Any dif- 
ferences in behavior or dress that 

distinguished athletes from other 
students increased the rancor di- 
rected toward these supposedly 
privileged sportsmen. In a college 
where many were trying to estab- 
lish traditions of "gracious liv- 
ing," the athletes seemed to be 
throwbacks to the old rowdy dor- 
mitory life when they showed up 
for Sunday dinner (a seated meal 
at which men were expected to 
wear coats and ties) flaunting 
wheat-colored jeans and T-shirts 
with their coats and ties. What 
really angered many students, 
however, was that the athletes 
seemed to have plenty of time 
to loaf, make noise, and enjoy 
themselves — another manifesta- 
tion of the unfair system at Rice, 
they said. 

By 1963 the colleges still had 
not measured up to the high 
hopes of some students and fac- 
ulty. Although there were subtle 
differences among the men's col- 
leges, none of them had a distinct 
individual personality, a fact that 
some on the Thresher staff de- 
plored in a newspaper supple- 
ment on the college system. This 
was, no doubt, a result of the 
freshman placement system, in 
which a mix of types and majors 
was the goal. Comparison with 
the amenities of the houses at 
Harvard or the colleges at Yale 
also left the Rice system look- 
ing like a very poor cousin. For 
funds, the Rice colleges depended 
on a small fee collected from all 
the members; but that amount 
covered little more than the pur- 
chase of a television set or a 
Ping-Pong table. It was certainly 
not enough to finance construc- 
tion of larger facilities, such as li- 

braries, study rooms, and private 
dining rooms such as the Harvard 
and Yale houses had. In a state- 
ment on trends in the colleges in 
1962, dean of students Sanford 
Higginbotham pointed out that 
students seemed not to feel a 
sense of responsibility for the 
colleges or real loyalty to them. 
He was disappointed that the col- 
leges were primarily places of en- 
tertainment and had neglected 
their primary obligations to sup- 
ply study facilities and oppor- 
tunities for social and cultural 
growth. Higginbotham had ob- 
served many violations of the let- 
ter and the spirit of college and 
university regulations. In the six 
years since their establishment, 
the colleges had not yet become 
the focus of student social, ath- 
letic, and intellectual activities. 
In 1963 they still had to live up 
to their potential. "' 

Despite the defects that many 
alumni recall, the colleges made 
a number of positive contribu- 
tions to life on campus. The new 
or renovated dormitories did 
much to improve living condi- 
tions on campus. College activi- 
ties offered a chance to partici- 
pate to many students who would 
not have been included or who 
would not have offered to help 
under the old system. The col- 
lege governments attracted a type 
of candidate different from that 
for the old class offices and Stu- 
dent Council, and several mas- 
ters professed to be surprised 
and delighted that the students 
proved they could run their own 
affairs without faculty guidance. 
College Nights brought in speak- 
ers whom students might not 

The 1950s 


otherwise have had the chance to 
hear, and a program of seminars 
enabled students to discuss pro- 
fessional fields with Houston 
business and professional people. 
Even though the liaisons among 
college residents and associates 
were still tenuous, great strides 
had been made in faculty-student 
relationships compared to the 
days when a student described 
the Institute as "a cold place."" 

The college system beneficially 
affected student life in another 
area as well: the treatment of the 
freshman class. Freshmen at Rice 
had always been harassed by 
sophomores, but during the 
1 9 SOS the treatment of fresh- 
men reached new lows, perhaps 
as a reflection of the less-than- 
civilized conditions in the dor- 
mitories. Although "guidance" 
was supposed to be different from 
hazing, and voluntary instead of 
compulsory, physical punishment 
continued, along with the re- 
quirement that freshmen wear 
beanies and run errands for up- 
perclassmen; and Forestry 100 
still flourished. Voluntarism van- 
ished in the face of sophomore 
pressure on dormitory residents. 
Hell Week, in which the two 
classes tried to capture each 
other's president and vice- 
president, led to pitched battles 
in which some participants broke 
bones. In 1955 new rules were 
passed that decreed a milder Hell 
Week, with women being specta- 
tors instead of participants and 
men's activities restricted to the 
campus. Only the sophomore 
president was subject to kidnap- 
ping, instead of all the class of- 
ficers and other students who 

had also been abducted. The 
Slime Parade turned into what 
some termed "an orgy" in i9S4; 
and although the sophomores 
protected the freshman women 
from smoochers in 1955, the pa- 
rade could hardly be called tame. 
The next year, 1956, was the 
least restrained. In the Slime Pa- 
rade, participants smashed in the 
door of Loew's State Theater; and 
after the Utah game, which the 
Owls won 27-0, forty or fifty 
freshmen mobbed a school bus 
carrying a high school band that 
had played at the game. 

The incident that brought Hell 
Week to a halt resulted in the 
deaths of two sophomores. Bill 
Carroll and Karl Bailey, when 
they climbed the inside of the 
smokestack/campanile to put a 
tire on top and were overcome by 
carbon monoxide fumes. On Feb- 
ruary 5, 1957, Dean McBride 
informed the president of the 
Student Association that the 
administration was abolishing 
Hell Week, which had become 
"a quasi-legal brawl neither pro- 
moting the aims of the Institute 
nor satisfying the significant de- 
sires of the students." The tradi- 
tion had become too dangerous 
to people, too disruptive of uni- 
versity life and education, and 
too divisive of the student body. 
The next fall, changes were also 
made in the Slime Parade. The 
line of march led to the Sham- 
rock Hilton Hotel instead of 
downtown; participation was 
truly voluntary, and there was no 
physical hazing on the way."' 

The inauguration of the college 
system changed "guidance" dra- 
matically. The Sub-Committee 

on Freshmen of the Committee 
on Student Housing had been un- 
able to reconcile the various atti- 
tudes toward guidance and had 
not produced any recommenda- 
tions, but the individual colleges 
soon worked out new practices. 
The most brutal forms of hazing 
disappeared in a few years — in 
some cases, immediately in the 
fall of 1957 when the freshmen 
entered the newly opened col- 
leges. However, certain remnants 
persisted for a while. Freshmen 
still wore beanies, but now in the 
colors of their colleges instead of 
the traditional blue and gray. The 
Slime Parade continued as a pale 
reflection of its former self until 
1964, when the colleges them- 
selves abolished it. The greased 
pole event went on; freshmen 
tried to rescue a beanie from a 
pole in a sea of drilling mud, and 
if they were successful, the guid- 
ance period ended early. Bowing 
to Sammy at football games 
lasted until 1961, when the tradi- 
tion broke down. In 1962 Hans- 
zen, Wiess, and Baker Colleges 
reinstated the practice, but Will 
Rice did not. (Students still bow 
to Sammy in the 1980s.) 

"Guidance" become "orienta- 
tion," something quite different, 
during these years, as colleges 
welcomed their freshmen and 
tried to help them become ac- 
climated to Rice, Its people, 
the new college traditions, and 


The 1 9 SOS 

Academic Difficulties 

While the collej;c system im- 
proved nonacademie life on 
campus considerably, it did not 
initially help much with aca- 
demic matters. Those difficulties 
continued during the 19SOS, as 
both faculty and students ac- 
knowledged — although they 
went about solving the problems 
in different ways and from very 
different perspectives. 

Early in the decade the faculty 
began to study the effectiveness 
of the undergraduate depart- 
ments. A Committee of Educa- 
tional Inquiry was established 
during the 1952-53 school year 
to investigate undergraduate edu- 
cation. It took as its starting 
point a statement from the Car- 
negie Foundation for the Ad- 
vancement of Teaching, which 
implied that colleges "drifted" 
into educational policies by yield- 
ing to pressures of the moment 
and thereafter followed the prece- 
dents set in haste. The drift had 
its origins in the fact that admin- 
istrators could not devote suffi- 
cient time and attention to plan- 
ning and policy matters, and the 
faculty did not. The committee 
thought that this criticism did 
not apply to Rice but decided to 
test Its validity and see where the 
Institute stood. 

Fortunately, the committee 
reported, the faculty generally 
agreed on the aims and purposes 
of the undergraduate program: 
providing the best possible oppor- 
tunities for the development of 
"above-average minds," at the 
same time giving adequate atten- 

tion to preprofessionai training in 
certain areas. Indeed, these had 
been the goals since the founding 
of the university. There was, 
however, some difference of opin- 
ion about how successful the In- 
stitute had been in achieving 
those aims. 

In theory, the common core 
curriculum introduced in 1947- 
48 provided all students with the 
opportunity to explore various 
fields and broaden their educa- 
tional backgrounds before select- 
ing their majors. The freshman 
and sophomore years offered 
basic studies in both humanities 
and sciences before the student 
decided on a specialty, and even 
in the last two years further re- 
quired courses allowed only lim- 
ited concentration in an aca- 
demic field. In practice, the 
course requirements were not as 
rigid as they might have seemed. 
Changes had occurred before 
even one class had gone through 
the complete four-year program, 
as certain requirements were 
dropped for certain majors. For 
example, freshmen who ex- 
pressed a desire to major in biol- 
ogy could bypass engineering 
drawing (even though biology 
was in the science-engineering 
division, which required the 
drafting course), and certain engi- 
neering students no longer took a 
second year of chemistry. The 
Committee of Educational In- 
quiry did not judge whether these 
changes were good or bad; that 
was a determination for the fac- 
ulty to make. The committee 
was concerned instead with the 
motivation for these changes: 

were they made to relieve lo- 
calized pressures or to alter the 
basic philosophy behind the 

The intent of the program — to 
provide a well-rounded educa- 
tion — was undermined by com- 
peting interests. Applicants were 
asked to specify a major, contrary 
to the plan's intent that a student 
should not choose a field of spe- 
cialization until the end of the 
sophomore year. Students were, 
after all, admitted to each divi- 
sion on a quota system, which 
was defended because of the In- 
stitute's limited enrollment. The 
committee was asked whether 
this system was fair to the stu- 
dent and whether it ensured that 
Rice enrolled the most apt 400 

Major requirements and 
"strongly advised" electives com- 
peted with courses outside the 
students' specialties for slots in 
their schedules. Often their ma- 
jor departments "suggested" that 
particular electives be taken in 
the sophomore or junior years, 
leaving students no opportunity 
to satisfy their intellectual curi- 
osity or to range very far afield 
from their majors. The choice of 
electives was narrowed consider- 
ably by course schedules; after 
registering for their required 
courses, students found their se- 
lection of electives limited to 
those that met during their re- 
maining free periods. 

True to the implications of the 
Carnegie Foundation's report, the 
Institute had "drifted" away from 
its educational policies, the com- 
mittee decided. The drift was due 

The 1950s 

to several reasons. First, the com- 
mittee suggested, Rice's faculty 
did not really understand either 
the policies or the means of ef- 
fecting them. Contributmg to 
their confusion were the faculty's 
failure to discuss policies ade- 
quately before taking action, a 
general lack of information about 
committee and administrative 
decisions, and the fact that new 
faculty members were unfamiliar 
with the background of present 
policies and procedures. The 
committee ended its report by 
suggesting that the faculty reex- 
amine the core curriculum, its 
implications, its applicability at 
Rice, and methods for retaining 
its desirable features." 

It appears, however, that the 
faculty never undertook a close 
study of the system and curricu- 
lum. In 1957 the Executive Com- 
mittee appealed to the faculty to 
reaffirm the basic principle that 
students would not declare ma- 
jors until the end of the second 
year, and the faculty so voted. 

The Committee on the Fresh- 
man Course, still in existence in 
1953, continued to wrestle with 
ever-present freshman diffi- 
culties. At least twenty percent 
of the first-year students were in 
scholastic trouble. They appeared 
to be bright and spent a reason- 
able amount of time on their 
studies. Counseling freshmen 
was doing no appreciable good, 
and the committee could reach 
no conclusion about the qual- 
ity of instruction in freshman 
courses. Faculty members on the 
committee felt that something 
must be wrong with Rice's selec- 

tion process. Certain facts were 
clear: academic students contrib- 
uted disproportionately to the 
number of unsuccessful students; 
out-of-town students did also; 
and Math 100 was still the most 
difficult freshman course. How- 
ever, no one had thought of a de- 
pendable method of raising fresh- 
man grades. The Committee of 
Educational Inquiry suggested 
that divisional, geographic, and 
gender quotas be abandoned; but 
their recommendation was not 
followed, and the Admissions 
Committee under S. G. McCann 
continued to apply quotas to the 
incoming freshman class. 

One of the most worrisome 
problems was summer attrition 
of the most desirable prospective 
students. During 19.S4 approx- 
imately 130 of these withdrew, 
causing the Admissions Commit- 
tee to turn to its waiting list — 
only to find that most of the 
prospects on the list had refused 
to wait for Rice's decision. Mc- 
Cann thought that replacements 
from further down the list were 
not as strong as those lost from 
the top. He wanted (and in 1955 
received permission) to accept 
more candidates in the first round, 
expecting that a sufficient num- 
ber would decline admission to 
keep the freshman class at the 
desired size. The top-rated appli- 
cants could thus be offered places 
before they made other plans. In 
a way, the problem of admitting 
only the best-qualified students 
solved itself during the 1950s, as 
the number of applicants rose. In 
1950 the total number of appli- 
cations considered was 713. In 

1958 it was 2,100, and in 1962 it 
was 2,700. Rice finally had an 
abundance of applicants from 
which to choose, but the problem 
of keeping students in school 

In 1955, still looking for a way 
to find perfect freshmen who 
could do the work required, the 
Admissions Committee made an- 
other change in its procedures: 
Rice's own entrance examination 
was replaced with the tests of the 
College Entrance Examination 
Board. The old exams had been 
used mainly to ascertain whether 
applicants were sufficiently pre- 
pared; the new ones were to be 
used not only for that purpose, 
but also to identify candidates of 
outstanding ability. The CEEB 
tests were not an absolute re- 
quirement for those who sought 
admission, but those who took 
them were given "marked prefer- 
ence" if they scored satisfactorily 
and fulfilled the other regular re- 
quirements. The Admissions 
Committee continued to empha- 
size that the primary considera- 
tions were the candidates' high 
school records, rank in their high 
school classes, and personal qual- 
ities. Still, the CEEB exams did 
provide a series of scores by 
which to evaluate prospects, and 
the Admissions Committee, de- 
liberating long hours over its 
choices, appreciated help in mak- 
ing difficult decisions.'' 

Also in 1955 the faculty made 
an effort to help freshmen sur- 
vive Math 100, by offering them 
a math review before school 
opened. (By 1956 other depart- 
ments were asking to present ses- 


The 1 9 SOS 

sions to acquaint students witli 
fundamentals before scheduled 
orientation at the end of the 
week.) The mathematics depart- 
ment also changed the syllabus 
of Math loo; in 1956 the depart- 
ment dropped trigonometry, 
leaving the course to consist of 
analytic geometry and elemen- 
tary calculus. 

In 1958 freshman orientation 
was revised. The week before 
classes started, all freshmen were 
required to live on campus for 
four days. From eight o'clock un- 
til noon they took a class in trig- 
onometry, and in the afternoon 
they studied math, read a book 
assigned by the English depart- 
ment, and took care of registra- 
tion details. At the end of the 
week they were tested in math 
and wrote an essay. Whatever free 
time was left was filled with vari- 
ous quasi-social activities. The 
week could be a grueling one 
and, as it turned out, did not ap- 
preciably help the freshmen to 
succeed in either math or En- 
glish. However, the practice con- 
tinued until 1 96 1. 

One requirement was dropped 
in 195s, to the relief of poor 
spellers: the faculty abolished the 
spelling test that had been re- 
quired to enter the junior year. 
Thereafter, passing any English 
course was assumed to represent 
proficiency in spelling.'' 

Investigations by two commit- 
tees into the motives and meth- 
ods of the university do not, 
however, seem to have answered 
some of the fundamental ques- 
tions raised by the Committee of 
Educational Inquiry. Was Rice 

really providing the best possible 
opportunities for the develop- 
ment of above-average minds? 
Was the curriculum really achiev- 
ing its stated goals? 

In 1959 the dean of humanities 
could still ask what the purpose 
of the humanities division was. 
Was the undergraduate student to 
be "trained" for a professional ca- 
reer or given a "broader outlook" 
with more emphasis on the inter- 
relation of courses? How were 
the courses to be interrelated and 
electives chosen — by the stu- 
dents, their major departments, 
or the Committee on E.xamina- 
tions and Standing? These ques- 
tions could be applied to the 
science-engineering division as 
well. For more cross-fertilization 
of sciences and humanities, the 
dean thought that new human- 
ities electives should be created 
to attract science and engineering 
students, and courses in scien- 
tific departments for non-science 
students ought to be established. 
Teaching techniques could be 
greatly improved in some in- 
stances, and the teaching of 
freshman courses by graduate 
students ought to be eliminated." 

A New Attitude 
Among Students 

The faculty's discussions did not 
result in any real changes for the 
students, and the evident lack of 
change had an important effect 
on the outlook and general atti- 
tude of many. Alumni from ear- 
lier or later eras might scarcely 
recognize their alma mater as de- 

scribed by their counterparts 
from the watershed years of the 

Up to the mid-fifties, the pre- 
dominant attitude of students to- 
ward Rice seems to have been 
great fondness. There were some 
people, often transfers from other 
colleges, who thought the Insti- 
tute folk to be somewhat provin- 
cial and overawed with their own 
importance;" but the majority 
look back on their days at Rice as 
a time of opportunity, cama- 
raderie, serious learning, and 
downright fun. They share a 
sense of closeness, loyalty, and 
fierce pride. Students were abso- 
lutely certain that they were re- 
ceiving the best education avail- 
able anywhere. Many can still 
remember every college yell, 
almost every member of their 
class, and every professor — with 
all their idiosyncrasies. Many 
alumni of the 1920s and 1930s 
unabashedly state, "I loved the 

The new attitude was manifest 
in a bitter cynicism toward the 
university, the administration, 
the faculty, and even other stu- 
dents. The number of students 
who shared this altered view- 
point is difficult to determine, 
but it is clear from interviews 
and printed sources that it made 
its first appearance around 1952, 
when all four classes were en- 
rolled in the new postwar curric- 
ulum; by 1956 it was widespread. 

Several external factors as well 
as internal ones contributed to 
this cynicism. Pressure to suc- 
ceed did a great deal to foster its 
development, and it started be- 

The 1 9 SOS 


fore a student was even accepted. 
Parents were ambitious for then- 
children. A college diploma, es- 
pecially from a university with 
the reputation of the Rice Insti- 
tute, was considered a passport to 
success in the business world, 
and competition for the limited 
number of places in the best col- 
leges became fierce. Admission 
depended on high school grades 
and College Board scores, and 
whole futures seemed to be de- 
cided by numbers alone. 

Getting into college, however, 
was only the beginning. Once at 
Rice, students were faced with a 
new curriculum, which left little 
time for the broader aspects of a 
college education. It offered few 
electives and gave some students 
the feeling of being caught m a 
trap, subject to demands and pro- 
cedures they thought they could 
do little or nothing to modify. 

Many students saw a contra- 
diction. On the one hand. Rice 
students were told, and they be- 
lieved, that they were intellec- 
tually superior. They had achieved 
outstanding high school records, 
and they had succeeded over 
many applicants to be admitted. 
On the other hand, as they sat 
with their freshman class at ma- 
triculation, being congratulated 
on their superiority, they were 
told, "Look at the person on your 
left and on your right; one of you 
will not be here for graduation." 
When they started classes, their 
grades dropped for the first time 
in their lives, even though they 
felt that they were studying very 
hard. High school friends at other 
universities reported high grades 

easily made, while Rice students 
worked considerably harder for 
no perceptible reward in grades. 
Then they were faced with ex- 
plaining their low marks to their 
parents. The pressure to succeed 
was by no means unique to Rice, 
but added to the other factors, it 
increased the tension. To fail at 
Rice was devastating to some' 

Some students concluded that 
it was not their own fault that 
their grades were low; many 
placed the blame on the pro- 
fessors and their grading systems. 
As students examined the pro- 
fessors, with whom most had lit- 
tle or no contact outside the 
classroom, they isolated a num- 
ber of factors that might explain 
their scholastic plight. Some pro- 
fessors seemed to hold students 
in low esteem, considering them 
to be necessary evils who en- 
croached on valuable research 
time. These men were seen as 
careless and impatient teachers. 
Others, the students thought, 
were not as smart as their stu- 
dents, but their insecurity seemed 
to drive them to prove that they 
were, in fact, superior; it seemed 
that their method was to grade 
twice as hard as might have been 
appropriate. Some professors 
forced grades into a perfect bell 
curve, using them to rank the rel- 
ative standing of students in a 
class, and not to reflect the worth 
of a student's work indepen- 
dently. Others gave extremely dif- 
ficult tests over minutiae. Some 
seemed to think they would not 
be highly regarded unless they 
graded low, and others announced 
that they did not "believe" in giv- 

ing Is. There were a few faculty 
members who seemed genuinely 
interested in the students and 
their education, but very few, the 
students thought.'" 

Because Rice charged no tui- 
tion, students saw themselves 
as being there on the adminis- 
tration's sufferance and conse- 
quently as being powerless. Any 
student request for changing the 
system seemed to meet with 
stony resistance, yet the ad- 
ministration could promulgate 
whatever arbitrary regulations it 
wanted. " (It should be remem- 
bered that in the 19SOS, students 
everywhere were held to have 
few inherent "rights.") The apolo- 
gia, "We hope this doesn't incon- 
venience you," accompanied 
announcements of administrative 
changes in regulations and be- 
came an ironic quotation, fre- 
quently applied. Some students 
put it into a simpler phrase: 
"They think they own us."'" 

The pressure and powerless- 
ness were not all in the students' 
imagination. Dean Richter has 
said that the administration was 
determined to make the most of 
Rice's student potential and de- 
velop it to the highest possible 
level of achievement. The univer- 
sity in effect gave a scholarship 
to each student by charging no 
tuition, and it intended to get its 
money's worth. Students would 
be challenged to the utmost."" 

In both student and faculty 
conversations a question arose 
concerning this challenge. Was 
Rice both a hard school and a 
good school, or only a hard one? 
In the view of at least one pro- 


The 1 9 SOS 

fessor, there was a narrowly con- 
ceived education offered at Rice 
at that time that resulted in a 
heaviness and rigidity to the sys- 
tem. The joy of learning was ab- 
sent. At the same time, however, 
that same professor and others 
complained that the students 
were intellectually docile and 
less enthusiastic about learning 
for its own sake."' 

This debate went unresolved, 
but the problem of low grades re- 
mained. According to Dr. Ken- 
neth Pitzer, the University of 
California, Berkeley, kept records 
of the grade-point averages of its 
transfer students. Transfer stu- 
dents from only a few colleges 
raised their averages at Berkeley; 
Rice students were among them. " 

Some Rice faculty members 
recognized the harm that a diffi- 
cult grading system could cause 
and tried to draw their colleagues' 
attention to the unfairness of a 
forced curve or extra-strict mark- 
ing; but their arguments seemed 
to make little impression. One 
explanation advanced for the 
hard grading habits of some pro- 
fessors was that they had be- 
come accustomed to the single- 
minded, mature veterans who 
returned for their degrees after the 
war. The professors expected the 
same industry from the younger 
students, giving them lower 
grades when they were not as 
productive as the veterans had 
been. Such an explanation, how- 
ever, does not take into account 
the new curriculum and new 
demands on both student and 

Students reacted to the aca- 
demic challenge in various ways. 

Some accepted it, although they 
did not enjoy it, and made the 
"battle" into a game. These stu- 
dents often turned the system 
back on itself in a variety of 
ways, from splitting the chores 
for test-cramming, to choosing 
courses known to be easy (aca- 
demic students had much more 
leeway here than engineers), to 
manipulating seating charts to 
appear present when they were 
actually absent. Others accepted 
the challenge by working all the 
time, becoming in the process 
what students called "grinds" or 
"weenies." These students often 
felt the pressure keenly and knew 
that worrying was a detriment to 
their performance, but they also 
knew that it was almost impossi- 
ble to stop worrying. Worrying 
was built into the system. Some 
flunked out, but even that was 
done in individual ways. There 
were those who worked to the 
bitter end and failed anyway, and 
there were those who simply 
threw caution to the winds and 
enjoyed themselves before they 
had to leave."" 

There were also some who re- 
fused to play the game and left 
for other colleges where the pres- 
sure was less and good hard work 
was rewarded more generously. 
An alumnus has remarked that 
he thought Rice was more a test 
of mental stability than of men- 
tal agility."' Reaction to the chal- 
lenge created in a substantial 
number an "I hate Rice" feeling 
for the first time in the univer- 
sity's history."" Some students 
wanted to escape by graduating, 
showing the professors that the 
system could be beaten; they re- 

solved never to c:ome back and 
never, under any circumstances, 
to give money to the Institute. 
For some, the grind, the busy- 
work, the feeling that they were 
wasting their time in rote learn- 
ing, were alleviated by a few very 
good teachers who truly chal- 
lenged them to learn, to think, to 
reconsider old and new ideas, and 
to write clearly; a high grade 
earned from one of these pro- 
fessors was something to be 

One further aspect of the 
tension-filled situation should be 
mentioned. While "the system" 
created a great deal of pressure, 
the highly competitive Rice stu- 
dents created more of their own. 
One of the unanswerable ques- 
tions, endlessly debated by stu- 
dents in the late 1950s and early 
1960s, was whether Rice made 
students in its own image, or 
whether the students made Rice: 
that IS, did Rice attract a distinc- 
tive type of person? Admissions 
certainly resulted in a homoge- 
neous group, but it was also pos- 
sible that Rice attracted appli- 
cants similar to the students who 
were already there. 

In retrospect, many alumni of 
the fifties and early sixties have 
changed some of their negative 
opinions about Rice. Some found 
themselves quite well prepared 
for graduate schools; at the very 
least they knew how to study. 
Thinking back, some have real- 
ized that their perception of 
Rice's difficulty was artificial. 
The amount of study required of 
them had really not been as great 
as It had seemed at the time (ex- 
cept for the engineers). Some still 

The 1950s 


cursed certain courses and pro- 
fessors for being a waste of time, 
but the good instructors helped 
temper their anger." 

One long-range effect of the 
change in attitude was the devel- 
opment of a special Rice sense of 
humor — self-deprecating, flip- 
pant, a bit morbid, somewhat 
misunderstood by the outside 
world — still in evidence today. It 
can be seen in some, but not all, 
of the half-time performances of 
the iconoclastic Marching Owl 

As some changes in the curric- 
ulum (notably the creation of an- 
other Math 100 course called loi 
for academic students, and an 
expanded selection of courses) 
"softened" the regulations; as 
new, younger professors joined 
the faculty; and as the college 
system civilized living condi- 
tions, the bitterest cynicism 
faded. Improved dormitory and 
academic conditions allowed stu- 
dents to look at the university 
with a clearer perspective. In the 
1960s, they would not neces- 
sarily like every facet of the Rice 
experience, but the fundamental 
living and learning conditions 
seemed more humane. 

A Lighter View of 
Campus Life 

Of course, students did more 
than just study and complain 
during the fifties. There was 
hardly an atmosphere of per- 
petual gloom and doom, but 
rather quite the opposite. Stu- 
dents did their best to escape the 

140. Demonstration of radio and teletype at the Rice Exposition. i9S4- 

pressure-cooker of classroom, 
laboratory, and carrel. 

All sorts of activities still flour- 
ished on campus: the Dramatic 
Club, politics, literary societies, a 
reincarnated literary magazine, 
charity drives, and much else. 
The college system added more 
social events to the crowded 
schedule. Many notable speakers 
visited the campus, including 
General Dwight D. Eisenhower, 
at that time president of Colum- 
bia University; and the alumni 
continued to honor benefactors at 
homecoming. In 1957 the col- 
leges first competed in the Beer- 
Bike Race as a part of the Ronde- 
let festivities; in the early years 
of the race, the riders also did the 

For a while the campus was ab- 
sorbed in the mystery of what 
would happen next to Gertrude 
Stein. Mrs. Kenneth Dale Owen 
had given a bust of the author 
to the library as a memorial to 
trustee Robert Lee Blaffer, her fa- 
ther. The statue had not been in 
the library more than a few days 
when it disappeared, only to be 
found in a police station. On 
other occasions it was painted 
and otherwise adorned (at one 
point, catfish eyes were put in 
the eye sockets) before it was fi- 
nally placed in the Music Room 
of the library. 

The band, under the direction 
of Holmes McNeely rose from 
what Dr. Houston called "an 
almost all-time low to what I 


The 1 9 SOS 



141 -143. Three Southwest Conference winners ot the igsos. 141. Football 
team. i9S}-\4. 142- Football team. /957-5S. 

think is a respectable organiza- 
tion for an institution of our size. 
It seems to me miportant," the 
president continued, "that we do 
not undertake to do the kind of 
thmg that can be done by a very 
large organization and that we do 
not expect a large organization 
from a small student body. I do 
believe, however, that we can 
emphasize quality in the Band as 

we do in other fields and that we 
have good reason to be satisfied." 
Another kind of music was not 
so soothing to Rice's ear. Some 
Houston high school girls and 
some women students from the 
University of Houston came on 
campus several times, usually 
singing their school songs, and 
once, even more foolishly, Aggie 
songs. Rice men emptied the 

dorms and surrounded the of- 
fending visitors, usually dousing 
the women with water and let- 
ting the air out of their tires. Sev- 
eral times the police came to 
rescue the women and had their 
tires flattened, too. Once Marvin 
Zindler, an intrepid reporter for 
the Houston Press, came to take 
pictures of the event, only to find 
himself cameraless, kidnapped 
for a while, and all wet besides. 
Of one of these encounters, a po- 
liceman said that the students 
were supposed to be educated but 
had acted like wild men, and he 
was happy that his son was a stu- 
dent at AikM.'-' 

Sports, especially football, at- 
tracted the students' interest into 
the 1960s as less Neely and his 
teams continued to do well. Rice 
won the conference in 1953 and 
1957, going to the Cotton Bowl, 
and went to other bowl games 
after the i960 and 1961 seasons. 
The Owls beat Alabama in the 
1954 Cotton Bowl, 28-6, but lost 
to Navy in 1958, 20-7, to Mis- 
sissippi in the 1961 Sugar Bowl, 
14-6, and to Kansas, 33-7, in 
the Bluebonnet Bowl. Victories 
over Texas and AikM during the 
fifties were satisfying to support- 
ers, but especially pleasing was 
Rice's 1957 defeat of the Aggies, 
who were ranked first in the na- 
tion. Elated students revived the 
old custom of locking the cam- 
pus for an undeclared school hol- 
iday after a big win. 

Life was not without its exas- 
perations for Coach Neely, how- 
ever. Just when he thought the 
Owls had beat Army in the i9s8 
game. Army blocked a Rice field- 
goal attempt and then completed 

The 1950s 


a long pass for a touchdown. The 
final score was Army 14, Rice 7. 
Neely said the worst thing that 
ever happened to him occurred 
during an Aggie game of this pe- 
riod. The Owls had scored 12 
points, and time was gettmg 
short when the Aggies scored 
their first touchdown. Neely told 
his players, "There're 68,000 peo- 
ple here and every one of them 
knows that they're going to try 
an on-side kick. So stay right 
here on the 40-yard line, don't go 
back, just cover the kick." De- 
spite the coach's order, somebody 
backed up, leaving a hole, and all 
the Aggies had to do was fall on 
the ball. A long pass resulted in 
another touchdown, and Rice 
went down to defeat. ^'' The 1954 
Cotton Bowl produced one of the 
most famous incidents in college 
football, when an Alabama player 
jumped off the bench to stop 
Dicky Maegle's unobstructed 
run for the goal line. But, as the 
coach said. Rice got a touch- 
down out of it, and it did not hurt 

Maegle was only one of the 
outstanding players that the Rice 
sports program produced during 
this period. In football the Owls 
boasted of such men as King Hill, 
Buddy Dial, brothers Rufus and 
Boyd King, mathematics student 
Frank Ryan, Kosse Johnson, John 
Hudson, Bill Howton, Richard 
Chapman, John Burrell, Rhodes 
scholar Robert Johnston, current 
Rice coach Ray Alborn, and Mal- 
colm Walker. In basketball. Rice 
won the conference in 19 S4 with 
All-Conference players Gene 
Schwinger and Don Lance. The 
basketball team was coached by 

143. Basketball team. 19S3-S4 (co-champions). 

Don Suman from 1950 to 1959 
and John Frankie from i960 to 
1963. Olympic gold medalist Fred 
Hansen and Warren Brattlof, 
Dale Moseley Ed Red, Dale 
Spence, and Tobin Rote distin- 
guished themselves in track, 
while the tennis team won con- 
ference titles with Ronnie Fisher, 
Art Foust, Jim Parker, and Fritz 
Schunck. ' 

The 1950s in Summary 

During the 1950s the Rice Insti- 
tute changed on several levels. It 
expanded in faculty, student body, 
and buildings. Graduate work 
and research also increased as the 
administration worked to attract 
outstanding and promising pro- 
fessors. The attitude of many 
students took on a new, bitter 
tinge, and the college system re- 

arranged student housing, social 
activities, and politics. Almost 
all the changes of the fifties 
would pale by comparison with 
what was to come, but consider- 
ing the period of stagnation in 
the depression years and the fran- 
tic war years in the forties, the 
fifties looked good indeed to 
those interested in the develop- 
ment of the Institute. By 1959 
those people thought that Rice 
was ready to become what Edgar 
Odell Lovett had always wanted: 
a university in name as well as 
in fact. 


New Plans to Fit a New Name 

Edgar Odell Lovett died in 1957 
at the age of eighty-six. After his 
retirement in 1946, he had con- 
tinued to come to the campus, to 
keep his eye on what he had buik 
from an office on the third floor 
of the Administration Building, 
now named Lovett Hall. He had 
relaxed a bit during his years of 
retirement and had revealed a 
side of his personality that few 
had seen before. Professors now 
found him eager to talk about the 
Institute, and at a reception given 
by Dean Richter for retired fac- 
ulty members, Lovett was the life 
of the party. Newcomers to the 
faculty often found that he knew 
their names and fields before 
they met him, and it was always 
difficult to get out of his office in 
less than thirty minutes when 
one dropped by to have a few 
words with him. As a board reso- 
lution said of him, he was "a rare 
combination of the dignified 
scholar and superb gentleman." 

Lovett had shepherded the Rice 
Institute through good and bad 
times. He had seen his hopes for 

a world-renowned university 
threatened by the financial prob- 
lems of the 1920s and 1930s and 
had seen them rise again in the 
flush 1940s and 1950s. When he 
died, the humanities and social 
sciences at the Institute were fi- 
nally beginning to move toward a 
balance with the other side of the 
campus, and the college system 
of which he had dreamed in 1912 
was a reality. Lovett had called 
Rice a university from his first 
connection with it; his death pre- 
vented his seeing Rice called 
"university" in name. 

Changing the Institute's 


In December 1959 the Board of 
Governors met in special session 
to explore the possibility of 
changing the name of the Rice 
Institute. The term "institute" no 
longer conveyed the true scope of 
its educational program or its sta- 
tus in the academic world, and 

continued use of the name had 
caused confusion for some time 
among prospective students and 
faculty, not to mention the out- 
side world. A consensus of board 
members agreed that a change in 
name would be desirable, but 
they decided to explore the atti- 
tudes of the alumni, faculty, and 
other interested groups before 
taking action. 

Legally, it would not be diffi- 
cult to effect a change in name. 
The 1 89 1 charter stated that the 
Institute was to be known "by 
such a name as the said parties of 
the second part (the trustees], 
may in their judgment select." 
From the standpoint of public 
relations, however, the board 
wanted to be sure that the alumni 
were on its side, so it broke the 
news of its considerations in the 
January i960 issue of Sallyport. 
the alumni publication. 

In the article, the board out- 
lined a number of reasons for its 
proposal. Confusion over the 
term "institute" (which was pri- 
marily used to describe a special- 

New Plans 


purpose institution of noncoUegi- 
ate rank) was only one. Rice was 
increasingly emphasizing under- 
graduate, graduate, and research 
programs that marked a genuine 
university, and it needed to as- 
sume its correct designation. 
Strong evidence in Lovett's writ- 
ings and in early faculty actions 
showed that the institution was 
conceived and launched from the 
very beginning as a university. It 
was proving difficult to attract 
some potential faculty members, 
especially in the humanities, be- 
cause they thought the scope of 
the Institute was limited; they 
had usually heard of it as a col- 
lege strongly oriented toward 
science and engineering. Some 
private donors, corporations, and 
foundations, not knowing the In- 
stitute's program, would not con- 
tribute to a special-purpose insti- 
tute, only to a university. Even 
after an effort to build up the hu- 
manities, the Institute had found 
it difficult to attract proper atten- 
tion to that side of the Institute. 
The trustees had also considered 
the possibility of creating spe- 
cialized institutes within the uni- 
versity. As long as the mother 
institution bore the name "insti- 
tute," confusion would reign and 
it would be impossible to develop 
interest in and financial support 
for subsidiary institutes. Chang- 
ing the name to Rice University 
would make it possible for the 
school to improve its national 
and international standing and 
would counter the assumption 
that Rice was an institution of 
narrow scope. Finally, the trust- 
ees said, more and better gradu- 
ate students, especially in the 

area of the humanities, would be 
attracted to Rice if it were prop- 
erly named. 

For those who might not know 
the connotations of the term 
"university," articles in the same 
issue of the Sallyport defined 
the word: an institution of learn- 
ing of the highest grade, with a 
strong program of undergraduate 
instruction; emphasis on the lib- 
eral artS; graduate work, includ- 
ing the conferral of doctoral 
degrees; and significant research 
activities. The Sallyport pointed 
out that Rice met all of those 
criteria and that other schools 
such as Princeton and Harvard 
had changed their names at vari- 
ous times. The president of the 
alumni association, George Red 
'25, advocated the change, as did 
H. Malcolm Lovett '21, who was 
a governor in 1959. 

While faculty members saw 
the possible change as advan- 
tageous to the Institute, some 
alumni and students clung nos- 
talgically to the old name. To a 
Thresher poll the senior class 
president responded, "Unless it is 
necessary, it is regrettable"; but a 
junior economics major thought 
it was "an intelligent and long 
overdue eradication of a funda- 
mentally unwholesome condi- 
tion." The Dallas Morning News 
let it be known that its editor did 
not approve of the change; but 
despite sentiment and the Dallas 
paper, the alumni expressed very 
little opposition, and the state- 
wide Executive Committee of 
the alumni association voted 
unanimously to recommend the 
change of name. In March i960 
the board decided to proceed. 

On April 6, i960, the board 
filed a petition for the name 
change with the Secretary of 
State's office in Austin and an- 
nounced its action to the student 
body in the Thresher. On July i, 
i960. The William M. Rice Insti- 
tute for the Advancement of Let- 
ters, Science and Art became 
William Marsh Rice University' 

A Change in Presidents 

A heart attack caused Dr. Hous- 
ton to go on leave for rest and 
recuperation in August i960, and 
in September, when he found it 
necessary to reduce his respon- 
sibilities and activity still further, 
he resigned the presidency. In ac- 
cord with Houston's suggestion, 
the board voted to appoint him 
chancellor, an honorary title with- 
out duties, and Distinguished 
Professor of Physics because he 
wanted to continue his teaching 
and research. These designations 
became effective February i, 
1 96 1, at which time the board ap- 
pointed Provost Carey Croneis to 
be acting president. To find a new 
president, J. Newton Rayzor's 
Faculty, Student, and Alumni 
Committee worked as a search 
committee. A faculty committee 
composed of Professors McKil- 
lop, Masterson, Griffis, Talmage, 
Chapman, and McCann also 
helped. The search did not take 
long this time.' 

Announcement of the appoint- 
ment of a new president came at 
commencement in June 1961. 
After investigating several distin- 
guished candidates, the board had 
selected Kenneth Sanborn Pitzer 

New Plans 

as Rice's third president. Pitzer, a 
forty-seven-year-old native of 
California, had received his B.S. 
in chemistry from the California 
Institute of Technology, where he 
had been in one of Houston's 
classes, and his Ph.D. from the 
University of California, Berke- 
ley, where he had been a friend of 
Griffith Evans. He was a pro- 
fessor of chemistry at Berkeley 
when chosen by Rice and had 
also been director of research and 
chair of the General Advisory 
Committee of the Atomic Energy 
Commission. He was a member 
of both the National Academy of 
Sciences and the American Philo- 
sophical Society. Among his 
many awards were a Guggenheim 
fellowship, an American Chemi- 
cal Society award, and the Alum- 
nus of the Year award from the 
University of California Alumni 
Association. His major concerns 
in his field were the development 
of general principles for predict- 
ing chemical and physical prop- 
erties of broad classes of sub- 
stances, and he had published 
several books and articles. At the 
same commencement ceremony 
the board also announced that 
Croneis would become chancel- 
lor with administrative respon- 
sibilities and that Houston would 
be honorary chancellor.^ 

In many ways Rice was at a 
turning point when Pitzer took 
over the reins in 1961. Its reputa- 
tion for academic excellence and 
for the high quality of its under- 
graduates had grown over the 
years to be a prime asset for at- 
tracting students and faculty, 
although the university's reputa- 
tion continued to be stronger in 

science and engineering than in 
the humanities. The graduate 
school had strengthened under 
President Houston's leadership, 
but Rice still offered doctorates 
in only a few fields. The human- 
ities especially needed to be aug- 
mented, and even the sciences 
needed more professors of na- 
tional prominence in order for 
the university to gain high aca- 
demic ranking. 

As is true for all universities, 
the key to expansion on both 
graduate and undergraduate lev- 
els was money; as had so often 
been true in the past, the univer- 
sity was operating extremely 
close to the limit of its income. 
During the 1950s income had in- 
creased, but so had expenses. For 
the fiscal year ending lunc ^o, 
1952, income had been $1.8 mil- 
lion and expenses $1.7 million 
for the educational and general 
funds. For the year ending June 
30, 1 96 1, income had amounted 
to $5.2 million and expenditures 
to $4.6 million. Per student, the 
university had spent $1,060 in 
1950; in i960 instructional costs 
were up to $2,031, and by 1962 
they were almost $2,400 per stu- 
dent. Raising funds was not easy, 
however, because Rice's old, un- 
warranted reputation for wealth 
discouraged donations.' 

When the new president ar- 
rived, he already had some pro- 
grams in mind to transform Rice 
into his conception of a leading 
university. He spoke of his ideas 
to the faculty, students, alumni, 
and other friends of Rice. For the 
graduate school, where his initial 
emphasis would be placed, Pitzer 
wanted a program of modest size 

but great distinction, staffed with 
outstanding teachers who were 
also eminent in research, in the 
humanities as well as science and 
engineering. He expected that the 
graduate school would double in 
size, from four hundred to about 
eight hundred students, but with 
more concern for quality than for 
mere quantity. He also proposed 
that undergraduate enrollment be 

Pitzer predicted that an up- 
graded faculty would benefit the 
undergraduate as well as the grad- 
uate program, as new depart- 
ments would attract good stu- 
dents. The faculty was the key to 
a university's reputation; devel- 
oping a strong faculty required 
attracting new people of high 
quality and scrutinizing those al- 
ready employed. "Doing reason- 
ably well will not be good enough 
at Rice," Pitzer warned the fac- 
ulty. For evaluating faculty per- 
formance, he wanted an easily 
understood system, with clearly 
stated regular procedures for de- 
termining promotion and tenure.' 

With these projects in mind, 
the new president began to put 
together a short-range plan with 
the help of an Academic Devel- 
opment Committee consisting of 
Alan Chapman (mechanical engi- 
neering), Gerald Phillips (phys- 
ics), and Donald Mackenzie 
(languages). By the end of 1961, 
Pitzer presented a plan for the 
next five years. It assumed that 
graduate enrollment would dou- 
ble, with only a small increase in 
the number of undergraduates. 
More important to Pitzer than 
size was the quality of that gradu- 
ate program; he characterized the 

New Plans 


ai .« im 

144. Kenneth Sanborn Pitzer, Rice's third president. 

New Plans 

existing program as "at best sec- 
ond rate." "We have far to go," he 
stated, "before our graduate pro- 
gram attams the first quahty 
standmg that our undergraduate 
program has attained." 

The short-range plan called for 
substantial development m cer- 
tain fields, among them psychol- 
ogy, political science, biochemis- 
try, and space science. There 
would be fifty-five additional fac- 
ulty positions, of which twenty- 
five would be at a senior level at 
a cost of $750,000. The increase 
in numbers of professors would 
produce a student-teacher ratio of 
twelve to one for undergraduates 
and seven to one for graduate 
students. The cost of an ad- 
ditional ninety graduate fel- 
lowships would be $200,000; 
eighteen new secretaries and 
thirty-five technicians would 
produce a budget increase of 
$170,000. For the expanded pro- 
grams, the library budget would 
need $200,000 more per year, 
while supplies, equipment, and 
overhead would cost $250,000. 

Capital requirements included 
a new library or expansion of the 
existing one, costing $1.5 mil- 
lion; another $300,000 for special 
collections in new fields; new 
laboratory equipment not ob- 
tained through grants but costing 
Rice directly $500,000; build- 
ing renovation for the Chemis- 
try Building in the amount of 
$300,000; and $2 million for new 
laboratory buildings to provide 
50,000 square feet. Altogether 
the short-range plan called for 
capital expenditures over a period 
of three to five years of $4.6 mil- 
lion and an increase in the an- 

nual operating cost of $1.77 
million over the existing budget. 
Pitzer urged that the money be 
sought as quickly as possible. He 
hoped to fund many of the capi- 
tal items and professorships 
through special donations and 

Pitzer also offered some 
thoughts on long-range plans for 
buildings and new academic pro- 
grams. The first buildings to be 
constructed would house the ar- 
chitecture and fine arts depart- 
ments, provide two additional 
undergraduate colleges (one for 
men and one for women), and 
create new housing units for sin- 
gle male graduate students and 
for married graduate students. As 
for new programs, Pitzer thought 
that Rice should consider estab- 
lishing professional schools m 
law and business administration, 
as these seemed to fit the needs 
of Houston and Texas. ^ 

None of Pitzer's plans could 
be achieved without money, of 
course. The board (especially 
Newton Rayzor's Faculty, Stu- 
dent, and Alumni Committee) 
began to study ways to raise the 
funds that would enable the pro- 
gram to proceed. New money 
was coming into the university, 
mostly in the form of grants from 
companies, foundations, and gov- 
ernment agencies; but it was ear- 
marked for specific purposes, not 
to be added to the endowment. 
The proximity of Rice University 
was an important element in the 
choice of the Houston area as the 
site of the National Aeronautics 
and Space Administration, and 
the university could expect sub- 
stantial government aid and ben- 

efits to the graduate programs in 
science and mathematics through 
its links with NASA. But that 
was still not enough. The univer- 
sity needed funds for all depart- 
ments, especially general funds 
that the board could apply wher- 
ever needed. Gifts helped, like 
the one from John W. Cox '27, 
who gave the university the lease 
rights to the old Yankee Stadium 
in New York City. However, a 
university is a great consumer, 
and expansion made a long-term 
steady income necessary. It would 
be less difficult to manage the 
initial expansion than the ongo- 
ing maintenance of the larger 

The Move to Charge Tuition 

Private colleges and universities 
usually raise some of their money 
by charging tuition, yet Rice's 
charter stated that the Institute 
was to be free. In 1941 the board 
had considered petitioning for a 
change in the charter to allow tu- 
ition fees, but the purchase of the 
Rincon oil field and some timely 
gifts had postponed the need to 
take action then. By i960, how- 
ever, it was becoming clear that 
costs were rising and would con- 
tinue to rise and that the uni- 
versity had to investigate every 
possible source of income. Fur- 
thermore, the policy of not charg- 
ing tuition was causing some 
problems in securing grants. 
Some foundations refused to give 
funds to a university that was not 
actively using all its resources 
(including tuition) to the fullest 
and that did not appear to be am- 

New Plans 

bitiously striving for educational 
preeminence. An institution that 
had a reputation for wealth and 
seemed to be living comfortably 
and complacently on whatever 
money came its way gave the im- 
pression to foundations and cor- 
porations that their gifts might 
be used to better effect else- 
where. Rice's Board of Trustees 
had always felt that an image of 
mercenary eagerness was beneath 
its dignity. To rebut the argu- 
ments of grantors, however, the 
board had begun to consider the 
question of tuition as part of the 
overall financial situation in 
1961, even before President Pit- 
zer made his recommendations. ' 
By January 1962 Rayzor's com- 
mittee was ready to recommend 
that the endowment be increased 
by S20 million and that the full 
board consider charging tuition. 
In February the committee rec- 
ommended definite steps to be 
taken toward raising the funds 
for an expanded program: a study 
to determine how tuition would 
affect the numbers and quality of 
students, and a request that the 
university's attorneys determine 
what actions and information 
were necessary for the authority 
to charge tuition. With this infor- 
mation in hand, the board could 
decide how to proceed. In April 
the board further discussed intro- 
ducing tuition step by step, be- 
ginning with the freshman class 
entering in September 1963. A 
scholarship system would accom- 
pany such a charge, and for this 
purpose they hoped to add S3 3 
million (instead of $20 million) 
to the university's endowment by 
June 30, 1966. The board as a 

whole approved the committee 
recommendations in principle 
and directed its attorneys to initi- 
ate the legal proceedings neces- 
sary to secure permission from 
the courts to charge tuition.' 

Related but at the same time 
separate was racial discrimina- 
tion in admissions. Here again 
loomed the charter, specifying 
that the school was intended for 
the white inhabitants of Texas. 
Although the Institute had ad- 
mitted students of Asian descent 
for twenty years or more, there 
were still no black students on 
campus. Government research 
contracts included nondiscrimi- 
nation clauses, and Rice's segre- 
gation policy, like its lack of 
tuition, was detrimental to fund 
raising. In May 1962 several 
board members thought that the 
board should not act unilaterally 
to integrate the school and that 
they should defer any move to- 
ward integration. After discus- 
sion, the board agreed that they 
should try to build favorable pub- 
lic sentiment for both tuition and 
integration. The lawyers reported 
in July that the Texas attorney 
general would cooperate with the 
university in legal action on both 

On September 16, 1962, the 
Board of Governors unanimously 
resolved to initiate legal action to 
obtain the authority to admit 
qualified students to the univer- 
sity without regard to race or 
color and to charge tuition. The 
resolution stated that while 
the indenture quoted in the char- 
ter imposed segregation on the 
school and limited the charging 
of tuition, it also left to the board 

the right to set requirements for 
admission and the obligation to 
maintain good order and honor. 
The world had changed since 
1 89 1; complexity and costs had 
increased beyond any degree 
imaginable at that time, and cus- 
toms, mores, and laws had also 
changed. For the university to 
continue to develop as an educa- 
tional institution of the highest 
quality, as William Marsh Rice 
had desired, the university had to 
be free from the restrictive im- 
plications of the language of the 

A suit to amend the charter 
was filed m Judge Philip Peden's 
district court on February 21, 
1963. After a challenge to the 
trustees' petition brought by 
alumni John B. Coffee and Val T. 
Billups, a jury considered the 
case in Judge William Holland's 
court and in February 1964 ruled 
in favor of the university. Judge 
Holland's ruling held that the 
university was then entitled to 
charge tuition and to admit stu- 
dents without regard to color. 
After an appeal by the challeng- 
ers, the Texas Court of Civil Ap- 
peals in October 1966 affirmed 
the judgment rendered by the dis- 
trict court. Both judgments held 
that the restrictive provisions m 
the charter would prevent the 
achievement of Mr. Rice's main 
purpose, which was the estab- 
lishment of an educational insti- 
tution of the first class. Relatively 
certain of victory in the courts, 
the trustees and alumni began 
the $33 million campaign in the 
spring of 1965; by 1969 some $43 
million had been raised." 

New Plans 

President Pitzer's 
Long-Range Plan 

While the board was looking for 
ways to raise money, President 
Pitzer began constructing his 
long-range plan for the university. 
First the specific objectives of the 
S3 3 million campaign had to be 
spelled out. The Ford Foundation 
wanted more definite informa- 
tion before committing a pro- 
posed grant to the university, and 
Pitzer desired a current appraisal 
of his new institution. He also 
wanted the faculty's evaluation 
of long-term possibilities for the 

In December 1962, Pitzer ap- 
pointed an Academic Planning 
Committee composed initially 
of professors Edgar O. Edwards 
(economics), Thomas W. Leland 
(chemical engineering), Louis 
Mackey (philosophy), and Clark 
P. Read (biology). The committee 
was to prepare a plan for develop- 
ment, and it began work in Janu- 
ary 1963 to chart a realistic 
course for the future, with the 
grand objective of making Rice 
into the major independent uni- 
versity "of a vast area." Pitzer's 
shorthand descriptions for his 
projected university were, in 
terms that a westerner could un- 
derstand, "Stanford without a 
medical school" (since Baylor 
College of Medicine is across the 
street), and for an easterner, 
"Princeton with girls." Pitzer 
knew that his ideal might never 
be realized, but it would certainly 
provide a challenge. The commit- 
tee was to consider such matters 
as optimum size of the student 
body and faculty ratios of under- 

graduate and graduate students to 
faculty, expansion of existing 
areas of study and introduction of 
new ones, costs, and priorities for 

Before planning could begin, 
the committee needed basic 
guidelines concerning Rice's 
probable status in various areas. 
The president told the committee 
to assume that tuition and racial 
restrictions would be removed, 
that a large scholarship program 
would be instituted, that Rice 
would continue as a member of 
the Southwest Conference, that 
admission standards would re- 
main high, that the college sys- 
tem would be retained, that the 
balance between general and spe- 
cialized studies would be main- 
tained, that space science and 
molecular biology would be de- 
veloped, and that the emphasis 
on the scientific basis of engi- 
neering would continue. He also 
told the professors to plan for a 
balance between regional service 
and the broader service to Texas 
that a genuinely international in- 
stitution would provide. 

To help the committee, seven 
faculty subcommittees were ap- 
pointed for various tasks. They 
studied virtually every academic 
area of the university: old and 
new departments, undergraduate 
and graduate education, research, 
relationships between the univer- 
sity and the world outside, and 
physical facilities. The commit- 
tee reports did triple duty. They 
were incorporated in a self-study 
that Rice was obligated to pre- 
pare as part of the accrediting 
procedure for the Southern Asso- 
ciation of Colleges and Schools 

under the guidance of Chancellor 
Croneis. At the same time they 
were used in preparing requests 
for grants from various founda- 
tions and agencies. Their primary 
purpose, however, remained to 
aid the Academic Planning Com- 
mittee in making its recommen- 
dations for the future. 

In lune 1963 the central com- 
mittee reported on its progress. 
The members saw Rice's princi- 
pal needs as more distinguished 
professors and good facilities, 
both as quickly as possible. The 
committee called for Ss million 
to be raised by the autumn of 
1964, as well as new programs for 
research professors, visiting pro- 
fessors, and preceptors (young 
faculty members on contract for 
three years); an enlarged library; 
standard but flexible faculty 
teaching loads; increased re- 
search funds; and more liberal 
faculty salaries and fringe bene- 
fits to meet competition in the 
marketplace. For students, the 
committee spoke of more flex- 
ibility in the curriculum for the 
first two years, along with pro- 
grams better tailored to student 
interests and needs and some in- 
terdisciplinary workshops at the 
senior level (but no specific inter- 
disciplinary programs). 

Several matters ought to be fur- 
ther discussed and studied, the 
committee thought. First, what 
exactly were the objectives of the 
undergraduate program in gen- 
eral- Was it to be an end in itself, 
or preparation for graduate work, 
or some combination? The com- 
mittee cautioned that the para- 
mount concern of any university 
was the education of human be- 

New Plans 


ings. Second, with respect to ad- 
missions, it appeared that as 
many as thirty-five percent of 
Rice students avoided standard 
requirements by participating in 
athletics, the band, or the Naval 
ROTC, or through personal sta- 
tus or influence. The committee 
suggested that the rate of failure 
of these special cases be deter- 
mined. Third, the committee re- 
iterated the long-felt need for a 
better student advisory system. 
Fourth, President Pitzer had spe- 
cifically asked the committee to 
study the minimum practical 
size for a distinguished univer- 
sity. It reported that of those it 
had studied, Princeton was the 
smallest first-rate university; its 
student body was double the size 
of Rice's, but its faculty was 
three or four times as large. The 
committee's last recommenda- 
tion was that professional schools 
be low in priority for the mo- 
ment. The university's task 
would be difficult enough with- 
out adding another issue. '- 

The committee's final report 
was made public in the Ten Year 
Plan, published in 1964. Rice 
would expand on all levels. Ulti- 
mately (in 1975, according to the 
plan), the university was to have 
4,000 undergraduate and graduate 
students and a faculty of 400. 
Students were to be selected for 
their high intellectual ability 
motivation, and personal qualifi- 
cations, and the professors were 
to be the ablest men and women 
that Rice could attract. The en- 
dowment would have to increase 
from the 1964 level of $81 mil- 
lion to about $93 million, and 
the annual budget would rise 

from about $6 million to an ex- 
pected $19 million. The $21 mil- 
lion building program was sepa- 
rate from the endowment and 
operating funds. It included new 
academic buildings, new resi- 
dential colleges, improvements 
in existing structures, major pur- 
chases of laboratory equipment, 
and library acquisitions. The plan 
was extremely ambitious." 

From 1961 to 1963, before pub- 
lication of the final plan. Presi- 
dent Pitzer had seen that there 
was much to do. Administrative 
organization badly needed clar- 
ification and definition. The orig- 
inal Academic Development 
Committee had reported that fac- 
ulty members were deeply dis- 
turbed by the administrative 
structure — or more precisely, by 
the lack of structure. In the past 
there had been no clear lines of 
authority, no administrative 
channels by which requests were 
made or decisions announced. A 
faculty member might take a 
matter to his department chair- 
man, but he might just as readily 
go to the dean or for that matter 
directly to the president. In ear- 
lier days memoranda were not 
kept of queries or decisions, and 
departmental secretaries had ap- 
peared on the campus only in the 
1950s. Pitzer instituted official 
lines of communication, and a 
number of policy statements de- 
fined responsibility for various 
administrative positions. One 
could still, however, bypass the 
formal channels and go straight 
to the top. Like his predecessors 
President Pitzer was interested in 
hearing directly from faculty and 

A slight reorganization of the 
administrative titles, functions, 
and personnel took place in 1961 
and 1962. Sanford W. Higgin- 
botham became dean of students, 
replacing fames R. Sims, and the 
office was combined with that of 
assistant to the president. Cath- 
arine Hill Savage, who had re- 
ceived her B.A. from Rice in 1955 
and was an advanced graduate 
student in the French depart- 
ment, became adviser to women 
in 1 96 1 and was succeeded in 
1962 by Alma L. Lowe, the first 
woman to hold the title "dean of 
women." Also in 1962, G. Fiolmes 
Richter, who had been the dean 
of the university, became dean of 
graduate studies, and the old of- 
fice that had for so long been 
called simply "the dean" existed 
no more." 

The lack of a tenure policy 
mirrored the absence of admin- 
istrative structure at Rice, and 
some faculty members had begun 
to lobby for definition in this 
area as well. Under President 
Lovett and on through William 
Houston's presidency, someone 
(possibly the president but prob- 
ably the dean) usually told a 
new member of the faculty after 
a year or two (ordinarily two) 
whether his career at Rice was 
expected to be long or brief. If he 
was expected to remain, he re- 
ceived an annual notice of reap- 
pointment along with a state- 
ment of his next year's salary. In 
practice, faculty members, even 
assistant professors, assumed 
that they had tenure even though 
it had not formally been granted. 
The result of this procedure was 
clear: first-class people who 


New Plans 

might have stayed with the re- 
ward of tenure did not have the 
incentive to remain; mediocre 
professors who could not have 
passed a formal tenure review en- 
joyed a high degree of job security 
and were difficult to remove from 
the faculty. A period of two years 
was hardly enough time to judge 
the abilities of a new faculty 
member effectively, and if the de- 
cision makers guessed poorly, the 
university had to live with the 
mistake. Since the academic 
world was becoming more mo- 
bile, there was no reason to sup- 
pose that really outstanding 
professors would remain at Rice. 
Rice's ad hoc process seemed al- 
most guaranteed to produce a 
second-rate faculty. 

However, the system did have 
some positive aspects. New fac- 
ulty members had time to de- 
velop professional competence 
and were spared the gnawing un- 
certainty of an untenured posi- 
tion. At other universities the 
scramble for tenure often led to 
petty personal rivalries, publica- 
tion of trivia for the sake of pub- 
lishing, and neglect of teaching 
to win a reputation for scholar- 
ship. As long as Rice was small, 
the university could minimize 
the disadvantages of its informal 
tenure system. As long as it de- 
veloped slowly, strengthening 
only a few departments at a time, 
it could and often did leave its 
second- and third-rate people in 
place. If, however. Rice was to be- 
come a first-rate university in all 
fields, it could not afford to keep 
unproductive faculty or to con- 
tinue without a formal mecha- 

nism for evaluation that included 
clearly written procedures. 

In i960 the Rice chapter of the 
American Association of Uni- 
versity Professors discussed the 
matter of tenure with acting pres- 
ident Croneis and the board. Re- 
flecting the national trend toward 
tenure in higher education, Pit- 
zer's first Academic Develop- 
ment Committee recommended 
a stated tenure policy as neces- 
sary to attract superior profes- 
sors; early in 1962 the president 
submitted a tenure system for 
board approval. In lanuary the 
board approved the system and in 
March confirmed the status (ei- 
ther with tenure or on a one- to 
three-year appointment) of all 
faculty members.' 

Expansion of the faculty began 
even before the final plan was 
adopted. What had begun under 
President Houston continued 
during Carey Croneis's brief term 
as acting president and increased 
under Kenneth Pitzer. From 
about 130 in 19 S7, faculty num- 
bers rose to over 150 in i960 and 
to 183 (17s men, 8 women) in 
1962. Additions to the ranks in 
the late 19SOS and early 1960s in- 
cluded William Caudill in archi- 
tecture, Edgar O. Edwards and 
Gaston Rimlinger in economics, 
Thomas Rabson in electrical en- 
gineering, Alan Grob and Walter 
Isle in English, and Frederic Wie- 
runi and lames Wilhoit in me- 
chanical engineering. Economics 
historian Louis Galambos, Bis- 
marck and Roosevelt scholar 
Francis Loewenheim, southern 
historian Sanford W. Higgin- 
botham, and Austrian specialist 

R. |ohn Rath joined history, while 
lean-Claude DeBremaecker went 
to geology and Paul Donoho to 
physics. The cheerful Scot Don- 
ald Mackenzie came to teach 
classics; archaeologist Frank 
Hole and Japan scholar Edward 
Norbeck constituted the new de- 
partment of anthropology; Alex- 
ander Dessler headed the space 
science department, the first 
such department in the country. 

The board did not forget those 
outstanding professors now at 
the compulsory retirement age. 
Believing that some of these men 
could still be useful to Rice, the 
board, at Rayzor's suggestion, 
created the position of Trustee 
Distinguished Professor for cer- 
tain honored faculty members, 
who would continue some teach- 
ing and research after official re- 
tirement. Each was limited to 
teaching six hours a semester. By 
1963 Professors Chillman, Bray, 
McKillop, and Tsanoff had been 
chosen for this position.' 

To be a university of national 
and international stature, Pitzer 
thought that Rice needed a more 
comprehensive curriculum; and 
as new teachers were hired, the 
course list expanded. The hu- 
manities and social sciences, un- 
emphasized for so long, finally 
began to come into their own. 
New departments such as fine 
arts and the anthropology-sociol- 
ogy combination (sociology was 
transferred from its odd-fellow 
combination with economics and 
business administration), an ex- 
panded foreign language depart- 
ment, and new offerings in estab- 
lished departments strengthened 

New Plans 


the undergraduate level. By 1962 
Rice offered doctorates in eco- 
nomics, German, and philosophy 
along with those previously es- 
tablished in history, English, and 
French. Curriculum additions in 
the sciences and engineering 
were mainly on the graduate 
level. Both humanities and the 
sciences benefited from a pro- 
gram for college teacher educa- 
tion assisted by the Ford Foun- 
dation. Under this program, 
designed to answer the national 
need for college teachers, a stu- 
dent was able to complete all re- 
quirements for the master's de- 
gree and be well on the way to a 
doctorate within five years of en- 
tering the university. 

In i960 and 1961 the campus 
received the good news that two 
more buildings would be con- 
structed to house some of the ac- 
ademic expansion. In i960 Mr. 
and Mrs. J. Newton Rayzor gave 
the university money for a new 
building for the humanities. 
Rayzor Hall was placed at right 
angles to the library, across the 
quadrangle from Anderson Hall. 
In 1962 Professor and Mrs. L. B. 
Ryon bequeathed their entire es- 
tate for a new engineering labora- 
tory building. Ryon had been at 
Rice for forty-five years, having 
come as an instructor in civil en- 
gineering in 1917 and retired as 
a professor in 1958. The Ryon 
Laboratory site was to the west 
of the Mechanical Laboratory 

145. Rayzor Hall during construction. May 10, 1961. 

Further Changes in the 

Although there is little evidence 
that student opinion directly in- 
fluenced curriculum changes, the 
cries of undergraduates did not 
go unheard. The faculty made 
small changes in the require- 
ments to introduce a wider range 
of electives and greater flexibility. 
Groups A, B, and C were rede- 
fined to include the new offerings. 
In place of simply languages, 
literature, and music, the new 
Group A offered architecture, 
classics, English, fine arts, for- 
eign languages, history, human- 
ities, music, and philosophy. In 
place of history, social studies. 

philosophy, and education. Group 
B now had anthropology, eco- 
nomics and business administra- 
tion, education, political science, 
psychology, and sociology. In ad- 
dition to biology, chemistry, 
physics, mathematics, and geol- 
ogy, and in place of psychology, 
Group C included engineering 
and space science. The language 
requirement was changed to al- 
low students to take whatever 
languages they liked. (In 1962- 
63 the foreign language depart- 
ment offered French, German, 
Spanish, Greek, Latin, and Rus- 
sian in at least the 100 and 200 
levels.) The nemesis of so many. 
Math 100, was split into Math 
100 for science-engineers and 


New Plans 

Math loi for academic students 
in 1960; some third- and fourth- 
year engineering courses were 
changed to increase emphasis on 
the science underlying modern 
engineering; and the third-year 
science requirement was dropped 
for academic students of the class 
entering in 1962. 

These redefinitions and addi- 
tions did not really change the 
curriculum. Its basic premise was 
still to introduce breadth into 
each major program by means of 
outside electives or diversifica- 
tion requirements, and several 
of the old problems remained. 
There was still no agreement 
among the faculty about what 
specific courses constituted a 
"well-rounded" education. There 
was a general consensus that 
every student should be exposed 
to a variety of subjects within 
major divisions — that everyone 
should study some math, some 
history, and so forth. Exceptions 
to the requirements were still 
allowed, though, and some de- 
partments were still "strongly ad- 
vising" their students to take cer- 
tain electives closely related to 
the major. The Self-Study report 
pointed out these controversies 
and commented on the difficulty 
of assessing the effectiveness of 
the curriculum, but it made no 
recommendations for the future. 

A perennial question, some 
faculty members thought, was 
how to treat athletes. The faculty 
perceived a conflict between aca- 
demic and athletic interests in 
colleges and universities nation- 
wide, and Rice was no exception. 
Some thought that the presence 
of the athletes and their separate 

Department of Health and Physi- 
cal Education lowered standards 
for the university as a whole. A 
vocal group rankled at the special 
consideration given to athletes at 
admission time and the rumored 
(but never substantiated) special 
academic consideration they re- 
ceived. While many faculty mem- 
bers recognized that the intel- 
lectual caliber of the students 
admitted under the athletic quota 
was constantly rising, that some 
Rice athletes in recent years had 
been outstanding scholars, and 
that more were able to carry a 
normal course load in addition to 
the demands of their sport, they 
still saw problems. 

In i960 a special faculty com- 
mittee on the athletic curricu- 
lum began to study a new pro- 
gram for athletes. The committee 
recommended a new course of 
study toward a business admin- 
istration degree. Called the com- 
merce curriculum, the plan 
reasonably assumed that most 
college athletes would go into 
some form of business after grad- 
uation, not into coaching or 
teaching. This curriculum was 
placed before the whole faculty 
in 1 96 1 and was vigorously de- 
bated. Those who objected to it 
claimed that it would depress ac- 
ademic standards in the interests 
of championship football, and 
they said that they thought foot- 
ball and a first-class university 
were incompatible. Those in 
favor of the plan advocated pro- 
viding for students who were 
going to be on campus whether 
members of the faculty liked it or 
not (the board had just reaffirmed 
the university's commitment to 

athletics in the Southwest Con- 
ference), and ridiculed the claim 
that one department or course of 
study could lower the standards 
of the entire university. The com- 
merce curriculum passed the fac- 
ulty by a vote of 67 to 5 1 on the 
first vote and 65 to 56 on the 

Admissions Procedures 

Despite continual worries about 
the abilities of incoming fresh- 
men, admission procedures 
changed little. Under director of 
admissions James B. Giles, who 
had assumed that position in 
1957, the Admissions Committee 
retained its quota system, group- 
ing students by science-engineer- 
ing, academic, and architecture 
divisions. Physical education ma- 
jors had always entered under a 
separate system. In the 1961-62 
catalog. College Entrance Exam- 
ination Board examinations were 
declared mandatory, and the 
quota system was mentioned spe- 
cifically. There was a quota of 
sorts for women: the number of 
women in the academic curricu- 
lum was limited to the number 
of men admitted under that cur- 
riculum. On the other hand, 
there was no limit for the num- 
ber of women admitted to 
science-engineering and archi- 
tecture. Few women applied to 
those divisions, anyway. Whether 
Rice's single dormitory for women 
affected the number of non- 
Houston women admitted is 
unclear, but once the second 
women's college was built in 
1966, the number of out-of-town 

New Plans 

women increased. One thing was 
clear: by i960 Rice was no longer 
having difficulty attracting 

A continuing dilemma was 
the admission of out-of-state 
students. By limiting their num- 
ber, Rice had to turn down some 
outstanding candidates, but the 
charter stated that the school was 
intended to educate residents of 
Houston and Texas. On the other 
hand, if Rice aspired to be more 
than a state or regional institu- 
tion, it had to admit more of 
those it attracted from outside. 
Eventually the non-Texan enroll- 
ment was raised to thirty-five or 
forty percent, a figure that seemed 
to ensure admission of the most 
able students in both categories." 

The "Rice Myth" 

By the early 1960s, incoming 
Rice undergraduates had heard 
quite a bit about the excellence 
of the school's standing. Rice's 
regional reputation remained 
high, and its research and schol- 
arly achievements had gained 
some prominence nationally and 
internationally. Discussion about 
turning Rice into a first-rate uni- 
versity stimulated some students 
to consider their own situation, 
though their conclusions did not 
always match some of the glow- 
ing praise they were hearing. The 
school year 1960-61 seems to be 
the point at which students be- 
gan to reexamine their own edu- 
cational experiences at Rice; it 
was a year when several popular 
professors left. Their student sup- 
porters claimed that they were 

excellent teachers who chal- 
lenged them to do more than 
memorize. An angry Thresher 
editorial in 1961 charged that 
Rice could not be one of the na- 
tion's finest schools, because its 
faculty contained too many peo- 
ple lacking in "academic vitality" 
and because dynamic newcomers 
often resigned to escape what 
some students saw as a stifling, 
provincial, closed-minded atmo- 
sphere. The idea that Rice was 
the "Harvard of the South" was a 
myth, the vociferous students 

By 1962-63 corroboration and 
rebuttal for the existence of a 
"Rice myth" were coming from 
several directions, and the dis- 
cussion widened to include all 
phases of undergraduate life. Stu- 
dents, particularly those in the 
academic division, criticized the 
grading system, the quality of in- 
struction, the position of the hu- 
manities in relation to science 
and engineering (commonly 
called the "lag" of the human- 
ities), the limited holdings of the 
library, and the merits of the col- 
lege system. Grading and instruc- 
tion seemed to be the focus of 
discussion, perhaps because it 
was in the classroom that the 
students confronted the system 

Grades at Rice, the students 
claimed, were still overempha- 
sized and maintained at artifi- 
cially low levels, producing both 
apathy about learning and the 
phenomenon of "grade-grubbing" 
(the pursuit of grades instead of 
knowledge). Grade-grubbing had 
its roots early in the student's 
school career, as the result of 

pressure from parents and sec- 
ondary schools; no one blamed 
solely the grading system at Rice, 
but its system certainly contrib- 
uted. Furthermore, to the outside 
world, grades were earned on an 
absolute scale, and Rice students 
who were not at the top of their 
classes often faced unexpected 
difficulty getting into graduate 
and professional schools because 
of their records, even though 
they performed well on the Grad- 
uate Record Examinations. 

Faculty members agreed with 
many of the student criticisms 
and began to say so in committee 
reports. Thresher articles, and 
communications with the presi- 
dent and deans. In the fall semes- 
ter of 1 96 1, grades were distrib- 
uted as shown in Table i. In the 
class of 1962, thirty-eight percent 
of the students were on probation 
at some time (twenty-one percent 
were on probation once and sev- 
enteen percent twice); and thirty- 
six percent of the class withdrew 
before graduation, twenty-seven 
percent voluntarily and nine per- 
cent involuntarily." 

Such a grade distribution was 
not anomalous with that of other 
selective institutions, such as the 
University of California, Berke- 
ley, the University of Pennsyl- 
vania, the University of Chicago, 
or the Massachusetts Institute of 
Technology. However, it indi- 
cated to some professors that the 
overall grading standard at Rice 
was inconsistent with the high 
quality of the undergraduate stu- 
dent body. The Subcommittee on 
the Program on Undergraduate 
Instruction of the Academic 
Planning Committee commented 


New Plans 


Distribution of Grcuk-s. Fall 796/ 


loo-level courses y.s"" 27.7% ^9.6% is. 9% 7.^% 2,792 

200-level courses 9.9 t,H.i ^1.8 10.9 4.^ 2,182 

■500-level courses 12.6 40.7 34. s 90 t,.i 2,182 

400-level courses 12. i 35.3 36.1 11.6 4.8 8,373 

Figures do not include withdrawals or 35 "satisfactory" grades in 400-level courses. 
The total number of grades is in the last column, and percentages do not always 
total 100 percent. 

in its progress report that the 
grading system appeared to be dc- 
morahzmg many students; the 
committee members beUeved 
that many individual teachers 
and some departments were "in- 
discriminate" in awarding low 
grades. Donald Mackenzie wrote 
to President Pitzer: "The present 
system does, I believe, impair our 
effectiveness: the morale of our 
students is lowered, and they 
tend to become discouraged and 
dissatisfied, rather than encour- 
aged to find the joy in learning 
which inspires true scholarship. 
High standards are created 
through excellence in instruc- 
tion, not in low grades."'' 

Although the Committee on 
Examinations and Standing could 
find little conclusive evidence of 
irregularities or injustices in the 
grade distribution data, it recom- 
mended that all departments 
consider and discuss at length 
freshmen and sophomore courses 
especially. It encouraged faculty 
members to pay particular atten- 
tion to grading, presentation, and 
content, taking into account the 
students' preparation, future ob- 

jectives, and the work load. They 
should try to estimate the time 
needed for an average student to 
do all assignments adequately. 

The most notorious course for 
failures was still Math 100, even 
without the academic students, 
who had moved over to Math 
loi. In 1961, 24.1 percent of 
Math 100 students made IVs and 
19.8 percent made Vs. In 1963 
the figures were 19.0 percent and 
21.8 percent respectively. A de- 
fender for the mathematics de- 
partment spoke in the Thresher 
of a "very difficult and demand- 
ing course" and claimed that part 
of the result was due to the "gen- 
erally weak high school prepara- 
tion" of most of the students. 
The next week a humanist asked 
how it could be that the students 
were unprepared, when 8 per- 
cent of the freshman class had 
scored above 1 30 on the National 
Merit Qualifying Test and when 
the class average on the mathe- 
matics aptitude section of the 
College Boards was 701 out of a 
possible 800 points. In 1964 the 
failure rates for Math 100 were 
still a high 13.9 percent IVs and 

24. s percent Vs; the Self-Study 
report stated, "Obviously this sit- 
uation reflects an unrealistic 
grading standard, especially in 
view of the fact that Rice fresh- 
men are selected on the basis of 
their promise in mathematics." 
The alarming failure rate was 
eliminated only by abolishing the 
requirement that every freshman 
take a form of Math 100.'- 

Discussion of the quality of in- 
struction involved more than 
methods; it extended to the ob- 
jectives, principles, and impor- 
tance of undergraduate education 
in general and the place of under- 
graduate instruction in a univer- 
sity that emphasized research 
and graduate studies. Hearing an- 
nouncements about the antici- 
pated growth of the graduate 
school and reading about more 
and more research grants, some 
undergraduates became appre- 
hensive about their position. 
They were not alone in their con- 
cern; faculty members had been 
discussing, in one form or an- 
other, the place and purpose of 
undergraduate instruction even 
before the Academic Planning 
Committee and its subcommit- 
tees were created. 

The enduring question con- 
cerned the purpose of an under- 
graduate education: was it prepa- 
ration for graduate study, or an 
end in itself for those going no 
further than a well-rounded B.A. 
degree- Most people felt that the 
solution should provide for both 
eventualities within the same 
basic curriculum. However, there 
were additional considerations. 

A university has two purposes: 
production of new knowledge 

New Plans 


through research and study, and 
production of knowledgeable 
graduates. Professors should be 
able to conduct research in their 
fields as well as teach. The prob- 
lem was of course that twenty- 
four hours a day were simply not 
enough for one person to prepare 
lectures and teach, carry on re- 
search and writing, attend the 
numerous committee meetings 
by which the university ran it- 
self, counsel students, and an- 
swer other personal demands. It 
was necessary to set priorities. In 
1963 both the dean of humanities 
and the dean of engineering told 
the Academic Planning Commit- 
tee that the university needed 
to emphasize teaching — to re- 
ward classroom proficiency and 
lighten the class load to allow 
more preparation time. 

President Pitzer told a meeting 
of students that he believed a de- 
partment should concentrate its 
best talent at the beginning lev- 
els, because "that's where the 
most souls are saved." Although 
professors and departments tried 
several different methods of re- 
wards and types of organization 
over the ensuing years with vary- 
ing degrees of success, the major 
problems — preparation time, 
evaluation of teaching, and re- 
wards — remained. Students con- 
tinued to complain and to cling 
to the few teachers whom they 
considered really inspiring as 
proof that they were not wasting 
their time.'* 

Student Activities 

Although it was fashionable to be 
cynical towards Rice, most stu- 
dents still enjoyed the university 
experience in the early 1960s. 
With the advent of the college 
system and the building of a ball- 
room in the student center and 
an auditorium in Hamman Hall, 
many on-campus students found 
that they had little need to leave 
campus at all. They only had to 
make a quick trip to the nearby 
Village shopping area for articles 
unavailable on campus, or to eat 
on the days when the colleges did 
not serve food. Dances, plays, 
football games, visiting outside 
lecturers, and college functions 
could all now take place on 

The drinking age in Texas was 
still twenty-one at the time, and 

no alcohol was allowed on cam- 
pus. The liquor laws drove many 
parties outside the hedges, but it 
was still possible to ignore the 
rest of the city for much of col- 
lege life. Big dances such as Ron- 
delet, the Senior Dance, the 
literary societies' formals, and 
other such events usually took 
place at a hotel or country club, 
but the Beer-Bike Race was run 
every spring on campus. No 
longer did the riders both drink 
and ride — that had proved en- 
tirely too dangerous — but teams 
of riders and drinkers practiced 
for months on their respective 
specialties. In 1961 the record for 
drinking twenty-four ounces of 
beer was 3.2 seconds, and for rid- 
ing the loop road around the cen- 
tral campus it was 2 minutes and 
8 seconds. 
The administration brought 

146. Rondelet dance, 1962-63 school year. 

New Plans 

147. Will Rice College Chorus. 1962-63. 

one student pastime to a halt for 
a while. In their disorganized 
warfare with members of other 
colleges, the men had refined 
water-bomb throwmg (propelling 
balloons partially filled with wa- 
ter) by using slingshots made 
with surgical tubing, to the ex- 
tent that one missile was capable 
of breaking a window. Being Rice 
students, they also calculated the 
muzzle velocity for these water 
cannons. The destruction caused 
by these skirmishes resulted 

in the banning of water fights 
and payment for repairs by the 

"Rice's Honor," the school 
song, caused some argument in 
1962. Many students and alumni 
did not think that a song that 
emphasized "fighting on" and 
that was sung to the same tune 
as many high school songs was 
appropriate for serious academic 
occasions. Although it had been 
used only infrequently, "The Rice 
Hymn," composed in 1947 by 

Rice alumni Louis Girard and 
Nealie Ross, was proposed as a 
substitute. In 1962 lyrics were 
written for Sibelius's "Finlandia," 
but neither anthem caught on 
and attempts to press for their 
use were dropped. 

Students, faculty, and friends of 
Rice had the chance to see and 
hear a number of important 
speakers in the early 1960s. Two 
Presidents of the United States 
came to campus, Dwight D. 
Eisenhower in i960 for a non- 

New Plans 

148. The visit of President Eisenhower to Rice. October i960. 

New Plans 

149. The visit of President Kennedy. September 19(12. (© 1962, Aubrey Calvin) 

political address and John F. Ken- 
nedy in 1962 for a speech on 
space exploration. In 1962 and 
1963 some of the most promi- 

nent scholars in the world spoke 
on the Rice campus. The 1962- 
6 3 academic year marked the 
fiftieth anniversary of the Insti- 

tute's opening, and the semicen- 
tennial celebration rivaled the 
ceremonies of 1912."' 



As in 1912, so it was in 1962. 
Again invitations went out to 
universities, colleges, and insti- 
tutes, to learned and professional 
societies. The Board of Governors 
and the faculty of William Marsh 
Rice University would inaugurate 
the university's third president 
and celebrate its semicentennial 
with an academic festival on Oc- 
tober 10, II, and 12. Would the 
invited institution send a repre- 
sentative to attend the festivities- 
Again the replies came, this time 
from Oxford, Zurich, Toronto, Is- 
tanbul, Mexico City, and Taiwan, 
from the National Academy of 
the Lincei in Rome, the National 
Academy of Sciences, the Ameri- 
can Geophysical Union, and the 
Institute of Aerospace Sciences, 
from Stanford, Columbia, Chi- 
cago, Notre Dame, Wellesley, and 
UCLA. Rice's fellow halls of 
learning were pleased to congrat- 
ulate the university on its fiftieth 
anniversary and to send a dele- 
gate for the celebrations. 

Planning for the semicenten- 
nial had begun in i960. The com- 

mittee that was placed in charge 
by the board had as its honorary 
chairman Professor Harold A. 
Wilson, a member of the original 
faculty. The cochairmen were 
governors H. Malcolm Lovett '21 
and John D. Simpson '31; Chan- 
cellor Carey Croneis was the ex- 
ecutive director. The committee 
planned an extensive celebration, 
not to be confined to only three 
days. It was to stretch through- 
out the school year, with special 
speakers, symposia, and other 
programs in each department of 
the university. And this time the 
students would not be left out. 

There had been significant 
changes in Houston since the 
time of the first festival. It had 
grown from a small city to the 
largest in Texas, with a popula- 
tion of 950,000 in the city itself 
and 1,250,000 in the metro- 
politan area. The area was known 
throughout the United States and 
beyond for its petrochemical in- 
dustries, its wealth, and the aero- 
space complex. Houston had 
several universities, many cul- 

tural attractions, and interna- 
tional connections. It was no 
longer strange to see prominent 
philosophers, physicists, authors, 
artists, anthropologists, and 
chemists there. 

In addition to the inauguration 
of the series of lectures, the cere- 
monies were to include presenta- 
tions of Medals of Honor and 
Certificates of Merit to each of 
the speakers and to some of the 
university family. Hubert E. Bray, 
James H. Chillman, William V. 
Houston, Alan D. McKillop, 
Radoslav A. Tsanoff, and Harold 
A. Wilson were the Rice pro- 
fessors being honored. The guests 
who gave lectures included histo- 
rian Arnold Toynbee of the Brit- 
ish Royal Institute of Interna- 
tional Affairs, speaking on the 
change in the United States' posi- 
tion and outlook as a world 
power; Brand Blanshard, pro- 
fessor emeritus of philosophy at 
Yale University, with a speech en- 
titled "The Test of a University"; 
and chemical engineer Sakae Yagi 
from the University of Tokyo, 



150-155. Scenes ftum the semicentennial celebrations and the installation of President Pitzer. 

discussing Japanese problems in 
engineering education. Bertrand 
H. Bronson, professor of English 
literature at the University of 
California, Berkeley, spoke on 
English and American folk songs, 
and Sir George P. Thomson, a 
physicist from Cambridge Uni- 
versity, traced the consequences 
of the last fifty years in physics. 
Architect John 1. Reid discussed 

design; Vladimir Prelog from the 
Swiss Federal Institute of Tech- 
nology spoke on steric strain in 
organic chemistry; Allan Nevins, 
a historian from the Huntington 
Library, lectured on the relations 
between private and public uni- 
versities; and Albert Szent- 
Gyorgyi, director of research at 
the Institute of Muscle Research 
at the Marine Biological Labora- 

tory in Woods Hole, Massachu- 
setts, surveyed the horizons of 
life sciences. Louis Landre from 
the University of Paris explored 
the cultural history of western 
Europe; Fritz Stiissi, a colleague 
of Prelog's at the Swiss Federal 
Institute of Technology, talked 
about structural engineering; 
Princeton economist Jacob Viner 
looked at the United States as 



a welfare state; and Henri M. 
Peyre, professor of French litera- 
ture from Yale University, dis- 
cussed a Frenchman's view of 
American education. Claude E. 
Shannon, a mathematician from 
the Massachusetts Institute of 
Technology, looked into the fu- 
ture of computers; another math- 
ematician, Jean Leray from the 
College de France, dealt with a 

problem discussed in one of the 
19 1 2 lectures of Emile Borel; and 
anthropologist Margaret Mead 
talked of human capacity and 

Two Rice alumni were also 
honored: physicist William G. 
Pollard, M.A. '34, Ph.D. '35, exec- 
utive director of the Oak Ridge 
Institute of Nuclear Studies, and 
William Maurice Ewing, B.A. '26, 

M.A. '27, Ph.D. '31, director of 
the Lamont Geological Obser- 
vatory at Columbia University. 
Pollard addressed the alumni 
association dinner; honoree 
Keith Glennan, president of the 
Case Institute of Technology, 
spoke at President Pitzer's inau- 
gural ceremonies; and nuclear 
chemist Glenn T. Seaborg, chair- 
man of the United States Atomic 
Energy Commission, spoke at the 
Rice Associates' dinner. 

As had the first festival, the 
semicentennial gathering defined 
objectives for Rice University. 
The opening celebration in 19 12 
had outlined aspirations and fu- 
ture plans and was designed to 
chart a distinguished course for 
the new Institute; the later fes- 
tival looked to the past as well as 
to the future. The Semicenten- 
nial Committee expressed its 
purposes as follows: 

To commemoiate the first fifty 
years of Rice University: and to 
signalize the fulfillment of the 
dreams of William Marsh Rice, 
the founder — in which dreams 
there was envisaged the creation 
and development in Houston of 
an outstanding American in- 
stitution for the advancement of 
letters, science and art; and, fur- 
ther, to re-create the interna- 
tional academic enthusiasm 
engendered by the significant 
ceremonies held at the opening 
of the University in the Fall of 

To present to the world at large, 
as well as to scholars of every 
nation, plans and projects whose 
fruition, during the next half- 
century, will not only make se- 
cure the place of Rice University 



in the forefront of the worhl's 
distinguished institutions of 
higher education, but also 
further increase the Univer- 
sity's contributions to public 
enrichment through private 

To inspire among the friends of 
Rice, as well as in its Trustees, 
administration, faculty, students 
and alumni, a renewed aware- 
ness of the importance of both 
the research for truth and the 
dissemination of knowledge as 
exemplified by the record of the 
University during its first so 
years — and, further, to make 
plain to all citizens the rich op- 
portunities which in the next 
half-century will present them- 
selves for contributing to the 
progress and welfare of mankind 
through supporting an institu- 
tion pledged to the quest for ex- 
cellence in all its activities.' 

These ceremonies, while filled 
with activities, did not demand 
the same stamina of the dele- 
gates and representatives as the 
first ones did. On Wednesday, Oc- 
tober ID, after lunch in the vari- 
ous college commons (honorees 
and delegates ate in a different 
college each of the three days), 
everyone gathered on the east 
side of Lovett Hall for the inau- 
gural ceremony, which had been 
postponed for a year to coincide 
with the semicentennial. A pro- 
cession made up of the senior 
class of 1963, the delegates, the 
Rice faculty, the Board of Trust- 
ees, and special honorees began 
the ceremonies. 

The seniors entered first, 
dressed in black robes, and were 

seated behind the rows of dele- 
gates. The delegates, in contrast, 
wore the hues of their alma ma- 
ters — crimson, blue, gold — all 
the medieval colors from Old 
World and New World institu- 
tions. In place of mortarboards, 
many wore oddly shaped cha- 
peaux — tams, pillboxes, some- 
thing that looked like a French 
gendarme's cap. Surrounded by 
the flags, the solemn proces- 
sional music, and the partici- 
pants' regalia, one could easily 
imagine that he or she had been 
transported to a distant time and 
could savor one of the truly 
splendid ceremonial occasions 
that universities still celebrate. 

After the crowd had sung the 
"Star Spangled Banner" and had 
heard the invocation and greet- 
ings from the students, the 
alumni, and the faculty. Dr. 
Houston presented the speaker, 
Keith Glennan, who delivered 
an address entitled "The Univer- 
sity in a World of Accelerating 
Change." The Rice University 
Chorus sang a song, and then Dr. 
Houston presented Dr. Pitzer 
to board chairman George R. 
Brown, who formally installed 
Kenneth Sanborn Pitzer as Rice's 
third president. Following the in- 
auguration were a reception at 
4:30 P.M. in the Rice Memorial 
Student Center and a dinner for 
1,220 at 7:30 that evening in 
the Crystal Ballroom of the Rice 

Only two things went wrong. It 
was extremely hot for October: at 
noon on the day of the inaugura- 
tion the temperature stood at 
ninety-five degrees. To relieve 
the discomfort of the formally 

robed participants, the next 
morning's speech by Arnold 
Toynbee and the presentation of 
medals to the honorees were 
moved downtown to the air- 
conditioned Music Hall, instead 
of being held on the Lovett Hall 
lawn as planned. The lectures 
that followed on campus were all 
in air-conditioned buildings. The 
second problem concerned the 
new president's voice. A viral in- 
fection attacked his throat and 
left him with almost no voice, 
but he still managed to be heard 
and was fully recovered in a few 

Lectures morning and after- 
noon, lunch in the colleges' 
commons, and dinners at night 
completed the three days of fes- 
tivity. The Rice Hotel was the 
scene of all the dinners: the in- 
augural banquet, the Rice Asso- 
ciates' dinner for the visiting 
scholars, and the homecoming 
dinner of the alumni association. 

On Saturday the alumni laid 
their yearly wreath at William 
Marsh Rice's monument. Follow- 
ing a practice that President 
Houston had begun at his inaugu- 
ration, Pitzer had placed a second 
wreath on the steps of the monu- 
ment before joining the pro- 
cession to his inauguration the 
day before. At 10:30 Saturday 
morning the new president pre- 
sided at the dedication of Rayzor 
Hall. The alumni attended a 
brunch and later a showing of the 
alumni semicentennial film 
Golden Years, the work of Mr. 
and Mrs. Shad Graham (Ruth 
McLain '28I and Grace Leake 
Watts '22. Festivities ended that 
night at the football game, which 



the Owls lost to the University of 
Oregon, 31-12. 

The semicentennial celebra- 
tion contmued throughout the 
year, as departments and colleges 
held their own festivals with ad- 
ditional distinguished partici- 
pants. The history department 
discussed theory in American 
politics, the idea of the South, 
and perspectives in medieval 
history. Physics looked at fast 
neutron physics; the geology de- 
partment held symposia on natu- 
ral radiation in the environment 
and on the earth sciences; and 
psychology contrasted behavior- 
ism and phenomenology. Biology 
held a symposium on delayed im- 
plantation and anthropology 
studied prehistoric people in the 
New World, while economics dis- 
cussed the nation's objectives in 
that field. The English depart- 
ment organized two symposia, 
one with essays on Restoration 
and eighteenth-century literature 
in honor of Alan McKillop, and 
the other with critical and histor- 
ical essays. The architects looked 
at the people's architects, and 
Jones College held its own gath- 
ering focused on the role of the 
educated woman.' 

One regret might have sad- 
dened participants in the celebra- 
tion: Edgar Odell Lovett did not 
live to see Rice's fiftieth year. 
More than anyone else, except 
the founder, he was responsible 
for the idea of Rice, what the uni- 
versity stood for, what it hoped to 
be. Lovett had been with Rice 
since its inception. He had seen 
his dreams for a university inter- 
rupted in the hard economic 
times of the 1920s and the 1930s, 

and he had seen them revive in 
the 1940s. His Institute was a 
small place, with an excellent 
reputation for scholarly stan- 
dards, for its graduates, and for 
some of its faculty members. At 
first its reputation was concen- 
trated in Texas and the South. At 
the same time, the Institute had 
friends at some of the most pres- 
tigious universities both in the 
United States and abroad, mainly 
because of Lovett's wide acquain- 
tance, his continuing travels, the 
faculty he had attracted, and the 
accomplishments of Rice gradu- 
ates. The academic world was 
much smaller in those days. 
Transportation was slow, Rice 
was far from the centers of learn- 
ing on the east and west coasts, 
and scholars in the East had diffi- 
culty thinking that distinguished 
universities could be found west 
of the Appalachians or south of 
the Ohio River. Many people, in- 
cluding some applicants for fac- 
ulty positions, hardly knew 
where Houston was. Without 
money for expansion, the Insti- 
tute could do little but try to 
maintain its position. 

As with most universities, the 
progress of Rice has been tied to 
its finances. The Baker board 
members are much to be praised 
for establishing the university as 
they did. Their reluctance to 
raise additional funds in the 
1920s may have stemmed from 
provisions in the charter placing 
full responsibility for the Insti- 
tute in their hands and forbidding 
them to go into debt, and from 
the fear that donations would 
often have unwarranted strings 
attached. The proscription 

against debt made the cautious 
businessmen only more conser- 
vative in their financial dealings. 
To such men the oil business in 
the 1920s and 1930s looked like 
dangerous speculation, and they 
were hampered by Texas law, 
which apparently prohibited 
trustees from investing in equi- 
ties. Furthermore, at that time 
Texas was a place for self-made 
men, without the tradition of 
community giving and with an 
aversion toward fund raising. Al- 
though Rice did not grow as it 
might have had more funds been 
available, the Institute survived 
the Great Depression while 
many other schools did not. In 
this case the board's conservative 
fiscal management proved to be 
the right course to follow. 

Through it all. President Edgar 
Odell Lovett pressed on. He was 
able to attract and hold such pro- 
fessors of sterling repute as 
McKillop, Lear, Hartsook, Wil- 
son, Tsanoff, and Weiser. Of 
course, he had help. It is impossi- 
ble to imagine Rice without Mc- 
Cann, McCants, and Watkin, and 
the contributions of these men 
are legion. When Lovett relin- 
quished his beloved Institute to a 
new president and a new board in 
1946, he could justly be proud. Its 
reputation for excellence was 
intact, its potential sound. The 
Institute had produced, and con- 
tinues to produce, eminent grad- 
uates, including prominent 
scientists, literary figures, busi- 
nesspeople, teaching scholars, 
and public servants at the state 
and national levels. 

The history of the Rice Insti- 
tute has also been closely related 



to the city of Houston. When 
the city began to grow in size, 
wealth, importance, and reputa- 
tion, so did Rice. After World War 
II many people learned more 
about both the city and the Insti- 
tute. After the war, thanks to the 
Board of Governors, their invest- 
ments and contributions, and 
the new president, William Ver- 
million Houston, Rice was at last 
able to begin the expansion that 
President Lovett had wanted so 
much in 1920. Emphasis was still 
on the sciences, but the human- 
ities had begun to grow with the 
strong encouragement of Presi- 
dent Houston and the endorse- 
ment of the board. With its 
dominant scientific and engineer- 
ing reputation, however, the In- 
stitute still had trouble convinc- 
ing the academic and outside 
worlds that it was not the "Rice 
Institute of Technology." Chang- 

ing Its name to Rice University 
in i960 helped to alter the mis- 
conception. But it was not until 
the humanities had strong and 
well-known undergraduate pro- 
grams to match those in science, 
and the faculty had exceptional 
teachers at all levels, that Rice 
was to become a university in the 
complete sense. 

Kenneth Sanborn Pitzer hoped 
to complete the task set by his 
predecessors, and in 1963 the 
world was full of promise. Some 
students were disgruntled, but 
they were constructively point- 
ing out important concerns and 
weaknesses that they felt needed 
consideration. Although several 
of the semicentennial speakers 
discussed the problems inherent 
in the vast enlargement of scien- 
tific and technological knowl- 
edge and wondered about human 
ability to to cope with the new 

realities, the academic festival 
was invigorating and exciting. 
The university was expanding at 
a rapid pace, there were plans for 
numerous improvements, money 
was coming in from many grants 
and gifts, and the first fund- 
raising drive in Rice history was 
about to start. Everyone could 
look forward with anticipation 
and enthusiasm to the next half 


Chapter i /*\^.oit^M^ 

1. One hundred fifty-two organiza- 
tions sent delegates to tfie opening. 
The Book of the Opening of the Rice 
Institute, i; J. T. McCants, "Some In- 
formation Concerning the Rice Insti- 
tute," Woodson Research Center. The 
center will be cited hereafter as 
WRC. The information on the open- 
ing ceremonies has come from The 
Book of the Opening and the Mc- 
Cants manuscript unless otherwise 

2. The city directory estimate of 
Houston's population in 1912 was 
109,594, based on a "name count" of 
60,41 1 individuals and the number 
reported for their families. 

3. Houston Post. October 12, 1912. 

4. Julian Huxley, "Texas and Aca- 
deme," p. 54; BooA' of the Opening, 
1:41-44; Julian Huxley, Memories. 
pp. 94-95; photographic file, WRC. 

5. McCants, "Rice Institute," p. 7S; 
Harry Marshall Bulbrook, "Odyssey 
of a Freshman — 1912," manuscript 
copy in possession of the Rice His- 
torical Commission. 

6. Huxley, Memories, p. 95. 

7. Houston Post. October 14, 1912. 

8. Bulbrook, "Odyssey." 

9. Houston Post, October 10, 11, 
12, 13, 1912; photographic file, WRC. 

10. It IS interesting to note that 
few provisions of any kind were 
made for the students, and there was 
no one to represent them at the con- 
vocation. Hattie Lei Red '16 heard 
some of the lectures from the bal- 

cony over the Faculty Chamber and 
remembers being much impressed by 
the people who were there. Hattie 
Lei Red, June 28, 1977. 

Chapter! Se,p/nni^ 

1. For a complete biography of the 
founder, see Andrew Forest Muir, 
William Marsh Rice and His 

2. Muir, William Marsh Rice. pp. 

3. Ibid., p. 109; J- T. McCants, 
"Some Information Concerning the 
Rice Institute," p. 13. 

4. James A. Baker, Jr., "Reminis- 
cences of the Founder," pp. 127-44; 
McCants, "Rice Institute," p. 81. 

5. McCants, "Rice Institute," pp. 

6. William M. Rice, Jr., had the 
idea of electing his brother Joseph to 
the board in 1901; but Raphael said 
that the board could not do that, 
since Joseph did not live in Houston 
and the charter said that the trustees 
must reside in the city. The excep- 
tion had been made in the case of the 
original trustees because that was 
what the founder had wanted. James 
Baker concurred with Raphael, so the 
position remained open. William M. 
Rice, Jr., to E. Raphael, April 13, 
1901, Letters addressed to Secretary 
E. Raphael, 1891-1907, WRC (cited 
hereafter as Raphael Letters); 
Raphael to Rice, Jr., April 17, 1901, 
Raphael Letters; James A. Baker, Jr., 

to Raphael, April 27, 1901, Raphael 
Letters; Ellis A. David and Edwin H. 
Grobe, comps. and eds., New Ency- 
clopedia of Texas. 

7. Charter of the William M. Rice 
Institute for the Advancement of Lit- 
erature, Science and Art, WRC. 

8. McCants, "Rice Institute," pp. 
13, 14; Minutes of the Board of 
Trustees, William M. Rice Institute, 
Treasurer's Office (cited hereafter as 
Board Minutes), April 27, 1910. Prior 
to the early 1940s, there were no 
Texas statutes governing invest- 
ments by trustees. However, there 
were laws of "guardianship," which 
prohibited guardians from investing 
in stocks. Trustees generally as- 
sumed that they were governed by 
these statutes, and the Rice board 
was no exception; therefore, they 
limited their investments of the Rice 
endowment to bonds, liens, etc. In 
the early 1940s, some trustees went 
to court and received permission to 
invest in equities. Later the Texas 
Trust Act was passed, further freeing 
trustees to invest their trusts in the 
stock market. H. Malcolm Lovett, 
oral communication, January 15, 

9. The charter stated that the Insti- 
tute would be open to white inhabi- 
tants; the indenture within the 
charter said "open to all." 

10. Charter of the Institute. 

11. Muir, William Marsh Rice. pp. 


12. Raphael and McAshan to "Dear 
Sir" [recipient unknown], January 10, 

I ^'•^' 


iyo7, Raphael Letters, bylaws in 
Board Minutes, August 4, lyos. 

IV Raphael to the Board of Trust- 
ees, December 28, 1906, in Board 
Minutes, January 8, 1907; H. H. Har- 
rington to Raphael, July 2^ 1906, 
Raphael Letters. 

14. J. N. Anderson to Baker & 
Botts, February 26, 1906, Raphael 
Letters; D. F. Houston to Raphael, 
January 25, 1906, Raphael Letters; A. 
R. Hill to Rice Institute, October 18, 
1905, Raphael Letters; Board Min- 
utes, January 8, 1907. 

15. Raphael and McAshan to "Dear 
Sir," January 10, 1907, Raphael 

16. D. F. Houston to Raphael, Janu- 
ary II, 1907; J. E. Pursons to Rice 
Institute, January is, 1907, both in 
Raphael Letters. 

17. Collection Index, No. 2, 
Raphael Letters; Board Minutes, Feb- 
ruary 20, 1907. 

18. Raphael and McAshan to Board 
of Trustees, February 18, 1907, 
Raphael Letters; Board Minutes, Feb- 
ruary 20, 1907. 

19. D. F. Houston to Raphael, lanu- 
ary 11, 1907, Raphael Letters; Board 
Minutes, February 20, 1907- 

20. A. R. Hill to Raphael, March ^ 
1907, Raphael Letters; H. Mc- 
Clanahan to Raphael, March 3 

1 1 907 'I, Raphael Letters; Board Min- 
utes, February 29, 1907, March 20, 

21. Statement by Edgar Odell Lov- 
ett, July 19, 1944, in Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Edgar Odell Lovett, Office 
Records, WRC. 

22. Ibid. 

23. Ibid.; Lovett to Rice, Jr., De- 
cember 18, 1907, copy in possession 
of H. Malcolm Lovett. 

24. Statement by Edgar Odell Lov- 
ett, July 19, 1944, in Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Lovett, Office Records. 

25. Hill to Raphael, March 2S, 
1907, April 4, 1907, Raphael Letters. 

Hill said that there were other fields 
that on the whole offered greater 

26. Collection Index, No. 2, 
Raphael Letters; Raphael and 
McAshan to the president and the 
Board of Trustees, February 18, 1907, 
Raphael Letters; Houston Post. April 
I S, 1907. 

27. Board Minutes, November 20, 

28. Board Minutes, December 18, 

29. Baker to Lovett, December 19, 
1907, copy in possession of H. Mal- 
colm Lovett. The same letter is also 
in Edgar Odell Lovett, Personal Pa- 
pers, Correspondence, Lovett-Trust- 
ees, WRC, and in Raphael Letters. 

30. Raphael to Lovett, December 
21, 1907, copy in possession of 

H. Malcolm Lovett. 

31. Ibid. 

32. Board Minutes, December 28, 
1907; Raphael to Lovett, December 
29, 1907, Raphael Letters. 

33. Lovett to Raphael, January 2, 
1907 1 1 908], Lovett, Personal Papers, 
Wilson Correspondence; Board Min- 
utes, January 22, 1908. 

34. William V. Houston, "Edgar 
Odell Lovett," pp. 137-40; Lovett to 
J. F. Downey, May 12, 1897; J. M. 
Page to Downey, May 12, 1897; O. 
Stone to Leavenworth, April 3, 1897, 
April IS, 1897; Alexander Ziwet to 
Leavenworth, May 5, 1897, all in 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Mis- 
cellaneous Correspondence. 

35. W. Wilson to Lovett, Lovett, 
Personal Papers, Wilson Correspon- 
dence; Andrew Forest Muir, "Rice's 
Future Mapped in Early 1900s"; Lov- 
ett to Wilson, January 3, 1908, copy 
in possession of H. Malcolm Lovett. 

36. Board Minutes, March 1 1, 
1908; "Recommendations," n.d., 
copy in possession of H. Malcolm 

37. Clippings, n.d., with Weems to 

Lt)vett, n.d. 1 1 908 -I, Lovett, Personal 
Papers, Correspondence, Lovett- 

38. Board Minutes, May 6, 1908, 
June 10, 1908; Lovett's Travel Jour- 
nal, Presidents' Papers, Lovett. 

39. Lovett's Travel Journal, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett; Lovett to 
Raphael, August 12, 1908, November 
27, 1907, January 31, 1909, March 
14, 1909, published in Dallas News, 
Lovett, Personal Papers, Unarrangcd; 
Lovett to Raphael, September s, 
1908, October is, 1908, November 
17, 1908, December 21, 1908, March 
14, 1909, March 25, 1909, Lovett, 
Personal Papers, Unarranged, and 
Correspondence, Lovett-Trustees; 
Board Minutes, April 28, 1909. 

40. Lovett to Raphael, August 12, 

1908, September s, 1908, March 14, 

1909, March 2S, 1909, Lovett, Per- 
sonal Papers, Correspondence, Lov- 

41. Edgar Odell Lovett, "Historical 
Sketch of Rice Institute, A Gift to 
Texas Youth"; idem, "Early Deci- 
sions in the Development of the Rice 
Institute," n.d., both in Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records. 

42. University and college histories 
and studies of higher education that I 
consulted included: John S. Bru- 
bacher and Willis Rudy, Higher Edu- 
cation m Transition: Nicholas 
Murray Butler, Across the Busy 
Years: Horace Coon, Columbia: C. 
H. Cramer, Case Western Reserve: 
Ernest Earnest, Academic Pro- 
cession: Orrin L. Elliott, Stanford 
University: Hugh Hawkins, Pioneer; 
Brooks M. Kclley Yale: Samuel Eliot 
Morison, The Development of Har- 
vard University Since the Inaugura- 
tion of President Eliot: George 
Wilson Pierson, Yale College: An Ed- 
ucational History: idem, Yale: The 
University College: Frederick 
Rudolph, The American College and 
University: George P. Schmidt, T^Jt' 


Liberal Arts College: Laurence R. 
Veysey, The Emergence of the Ameri- 
can University; and Thomas Jeffer- 
son Wertenbaker, Princeton. 

43. Lovett, "Historical Sketch"; 
idem, "Early Decisions." 

44. Board Minutes, May 12, 1909, 
July 15, 1909, August 4, 1909; Lovett, 
"Historical Sketch." 

45. Board Minutes, July 15, 1909. 

46. Board Minutes, April 10, 1907, 
April 24, 1907, June 24, 1908, April 
7, 1909; McCants, "Rice Institute," 
pp. 16-24. 

47. McCants, "Rice Institute," pp. 

48. Ralph Adams Cram, My Life in 
Architecture, pp. 124-28; Thresher, 
February 20, 1963. 

49. Cram to Lovett, August 30, 
1909, in Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Lovett-Watkin Correspondence. 

50. Lovett to Charles W. Eliot, 
September 27, 19 10, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Lovett-Watkin 

51. Board Minutes, November 30, 

1909, December i, 1909; Lovett to 
Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson 
(CG&.F), December 16, 1909, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Lovett-Watkin 

52. Lovett to CG&F, January 13, 
1910; CG&F to Lovett, January 14, 

1910, both in Presidents' Papers, Lov- 
ett, Lovett-Watkin Correspondence. 

53. Lovett to CG&lF, January 13, 
1 9 10, February 4, 19 10, March 11, 
191O; CG&F to Lovett, January 14, 
19 10, January 28, 19 10, March 17, 
1910, all in Presidents' Papers, Lov- 
ett, Lovett-Watkin Correspondence. 

54. CG&F to Lovett, January 18, 
1910, January 19, 191O; Lovett to 
CG&F, February 4, 19 10, all in Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Lovett-Watkin 
Correspondence; Lovett, "Historical 

5S- Board Minutes, April 27, 19 10, 
June 27, 1910, September 16, 1910; 

"The Rice Institute, A Memorandum 
of Information Prepared for the Sen- 
ate and National Council of Phi Beta 
Kappa" (1921), pp. 5, 6, in Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Department Records. 

56. Pamphlet entitled "The Rice 
Institute"; William Ward Watkin, 
"Architectural Development of the 
William Marsh Rice Institute," pp. 
1 10- 12. 

57. Pamphlet entitled "The Rice 
Institute"; Watkin, "Architectural 
Development," pp. no- 12. Cram, 
My Life, pp. 126-27; Julian Huxley, 
"Texas and Academe," pp. 61-62. 

58. Thresher November 12, 1937; 
Hubert E. Bray, June 18, 1976, Sep- 
tember 30, 1976. 

59. Muir, "Rice's Future." 

60. The Book of the Opening of the 
Rice Institute. 1:175-76; la Rose to 
Lovett, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Planning of the Institute; Lovett to la 
Rose, December 14, 1910, ibid.; Lov- 
ett to J. T. McCants, December 14, 

1 9 10, Lovett, Personal Papers, Early, 

61. Lovett to McCants, February 4, 
1912 ligii'l, Lovett, Personal Papers, 
Early, Math; Lovett to Lombardi, Feb- 
ruary 24, 191 1, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Opening of the Institute, Lov- 
ett Correspondence; Board Minutes, 
March i, 191 1. 

62. Loose clippings m envelope, 
Lovett, Personal Papers, Unarranged. 

63. Board Minutes, May 31, 1912. 

Chapter 3 .^^^.^ f 

1. Board Minutes, October 8, 1908. 

2. H. A. Wilson to Lovett, March 
22, 1912, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Miscellaneous Correspondence. 

3. P. V. Bevan to Lovett, February 
26, 1912, April 20, 1912, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Planning of the 

4. Bevan to Lovett, February 26, 

1912, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Planning of the Institute; Wilson to 
Lovett, March 22, 1912, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Planning of the Insti- 
tute and Miscellaneous Correspon- 
dence; Board Minutes, May 31, 1912, 
June 5, 1 9 12, June 12, 19 12, July 11, 
19 1 3; Samuel Eliot Morison, The De- 
velopment of Harvard University 
Since the Inauguration of President 
Eliot, p. Ixi; H. Malcolm Lovett, July 
27, 1981. 

5. Wilson to Lovett, March 22, 

19 12, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Mis- 
cellaneous Correspondence; G. C. 
Evans to Lovett, February 28, 1912, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Planning 
of the Institute. 

6. Evans to Lovett, February 17, 
1912, March 3, 1912; Maxime Bocher 
to Lovett, March 4, 19 12; William F. 
Osgood to Lovett, March 4, 19 14, all 
m Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Plan- 
ning of the Institute. 

7. Board Minutes, May 2, 1912. 

8. A. S. Cleveland to Lovett, Au- 
gust 16, 1941, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Office Records, Trustees; 
Lovett to Baker, June 13, 1935, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 
Trustees; Thresher November 12, 
1937; Houston Post, September 27, 
19 12; Houston Chronicle, September 
26, 1912. 

9. The Rice Institute Preliminary 
Announcements, 1915. The catalog 
for the university has varied in title 
and publication over the years. From 
1912 to 1924, It was called the Pre- 
liminary Announcements: from 
1925 to 1950, Announcements: and 
from then on. General Announce- 
ments. From 1947 to 1954, it was 
published as part of the Rice Insti- 
tute Pamphlet. Between 1950 and 
i960, the annual catalog alternated 
between the general announcements 
issue and the graduate announce- 
ments issue. In the notes to this 
book, the catalog will be cited here- 


after as Announcements. 

10. Sarah Lane, October 20, 197s- 

1 1. I. T. McCants, "Some Informa- 
tion Concerning tlic Rice Institute," 
pp. 88-9O; Harry Bulbrook, October 
28, 1977; Hattie Lei Red, lune 28, 
1977; Helen Batjer, August 10, 1976; 
J. W. Wilkinson to Board of Trustees, 
January 4, 19 13, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Office Records. 

12. Hattie Lei Red, lanuary 23, 
1976; Campanile. 1916. 

IV Draft article, "Coeducation in 
the Colleges," dated September 17, 
1929, for Gargoyle, in Lovett, Per- 
sonal Papers, Speeches. The copy has 
two endings. In the first Lovett said 
he would endow a women's college if 
he were in a position to endow an 
undergraduate college. The second 
said he would endow a college re- 
stricted to men or women for a hun- 
dred ycars; and if he endowed a 
women's college, he would make it 
subject to such academic organiza- 
tion as Harvard or Oxford. 

14. Hattie Lei Red, June 28, 1977- 

15. Houston Chronicle, |uly 24, 
191 5; William H. Wilson to Lovett, 
July 31, 191 s, Lovett, Personal Pa- 
pers, 191 1 -1957; Lovett to W. H. 
Wilson, August 31, 191 5, Lovett, Per- 
sonal Papers, 191 1-1957. The 
Chronicle article spoke in the name 
of the founder, William Marsh Rice, 
and claimed to know what he 
wanted for women; it was not what 
they were getting at the Institute. W. 
F. Edwards to Baker, April 5, 19 15, 
May 20, 191 5, with Baker to Lovett, 
May 21, 191 5, Lovett, Personal Pa- 
pers, Unarranged. 

16. Mrs. Harold Wilson, "Rambling 
Reminiscences of Early Days at Rice 
by a Septuagenarian," WRC; Hattie 
Lei Red, January 23, 1976; Board 
Minutes, September 29, 191 5. 

17. Harry Bulbrook, October 28, 
1977; idem, "Odyssey of a Fresh- 
man — 1912." 

18. Lovett to Board of Trustees, 

lanuary 30, 1918, Dean of Students, 
Cameron file, WRC; speech at stu- 
dent meeting, September 28, 1920, 
Lovett, Personal Papers, Speeches; 
Florence McAllister Jameson, Febru- 
ary 3, 1978; The Book of the Opening 
of the Rice Institute, 1:164. 

ig. Announcements, 1915; 
Thresher, December 15, 191ft; 
Bulbrook, "Odyssey." 

20. Hattie Lei Red, June 28, 1977. 

21. Campanile. 19 16; Thresher, 
December 15, 191 6. 

22. Isaac Sanders, note on Rice 
University Historical Commission, 
vol. I, no. I, in possession of the 
commission; Henry A. Tillett, De- 
cember 23, 1975; Bulbrook, "Odys- 
sey"; H. Malcolm Lovett, May 19, 

23. After participating in 191 5, the 
Institute took a leave of absence in 
1916 and rejoined the conference in 
December 1917. 

24. Houston Post, October 10, 
1912; Football '77.- Southwest Con- 
ference Roster and Record Book. pp. 
.S, 64- 

25. Thresher. February 15, 191 7; 
Debbie Davies, "Rice has been trad- 
ing knocks with the distinguished 
Texas A&M University for 63 years," 
pp. 10- 1 1; Basketball '78: The 197S 
Southwest Conference Roster and 
Record Book, pp. 24-29; Southwest 
Conference 1978 Spring Sports Me- 
dia Guide, pp. 24-36. 

26. Wilson to Lovett, February 28, 
191 3, March 2, 191 3, March 31, 
1913, June 13, 1913, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Miscellaneous 

27. Clipping from the Daily 
Pnncetonian, August 10, 191 3, in 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records; Lovett to John R. Effinger, 
April 24, 1920, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, L^epartment Records. 

28. Board Minutes, July 11, 191 3; 
Wilson to Lovett, March 2, 19 13, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Mis- 

cellaneous Correspondence, "The 
Development of the Rice Institute," 
typescript, in Lovett to George R. 
Brown, July 20, 1944, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 

29. Ortrud Much, oral communica- 
tion, March 24, 1982. 

30. Weiser wrote in August asking 
for a job and was hired for the fall, 
but it unclear how many hopeful ap- 
plicants did this and were successful. 
Apparently Lovett, the dean, and 
various department chairmen relied 
on recommendations from friends 
and well-known men in the various 
fields to fill most vacancies in the 
faculty ranks. Weiser to Lovett, Au- 
gust II, 191 5, Lovett, Personal Pa- 
pers, 191 1- 1957. 

31. Andrew Forest Muir, "Rice's 
Future Mapped in Early 1900s." 

32. Belle Heaps, February 17, 1978; 
Florence McAllister lameson, Febru- 
ary 3, 1978; Hattie Lei Red, June 28, 
1978; Huxley and Hughes to Lovett, 
August 13, 1914, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Miscellaneous Correspon- 
dence; Huxley to Lovett, November 
5, 19 14, Lovett, Personal Papers; 
Julian Huxley, Memories, pp. 99- 

33. Board Minutes, January 10, 
1917; Tony Martino, vertical file, 
WRC; Mrs. Jess Neely, oral commu- 
nication, October 10, 1977; notes 
from Eula Goss Wintermann, July 24, 

34. Board Minutes, May 30, 1916, 
June I, 1 9 10. 

35. Address by Lovett on H. A. 
Wilson, June 2, 1950; Wilson to Lov- 
ett, March 2, 191 3, March 31, 191 3, 
all in Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Mis- 
cellaneous Correspondence. 

36. Faculty Minutes, June 5, 1914; 
Announcements. 1915, pp. 21-22. 

37. Faculty Minutes, June 5, 1914; 
Announcements. 191 5, pp. 21-24. 

38. Announcements. 191 5, pp. 



39. George Wilson Pierson, Yale 
College: An Educational History, pp. 
202, 258-66, 317-18, 319-33, 
428- 31; idem, Yale: The University 
College, pp. 198-205. 

40. Announcements, 1917, pp. 
33-34; Huxley, Memories, p. 99. 

41. Faculty Minutes, Early Com- 
mittee Lists. 

42. Faculty Minutes, fune 5, 1914; 
Blayney to Lovett, lune 1914, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Miscellaneous 

43. Bulbrook, "Odyssey"; Hattie 
Lei Red, January 24, 1976; Faculty 
Minutes, January 7, 191 5; Announce- 
ments, 1915, p. 24- 

44. Faculty Minutes, February 3, 
1916, April 13, 1916, April 27, 1916, 
March i, 1917, June 5, 1919- 

45. Recommendations from Com- 
mittee on Examinations and Stand- 
ing and Committee on Schedule and 
Courses of Study, October 19 16, in 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records; Faculty Minutes, November 
23, 1916, January 10, 1918, February 
21, 1918; Blayney to Lovett, June 

1 9 14, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Mis- 
cellaneous Correspondence. 

46. Lovett to T. J. J. See, October 
17, 1911, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Opening of the Institute. 

47. Alice Dean, vertical file, WRC; 
Sarah Lane, October 20, 1975, July 1, 
1977. It appears that m 191 5, at least, 
the question of a librarian came up. 
Evans wrote Lovett that perhaps he, 
Evans, should ask at Columbia and 
other schools for "a reliable and ca- 
pable man, trained in the history of 
science, who would be willing to en- 
ter the library at an instructor's sal- 
ary, with the hope of eventually 
becoming the librarian." Lovett's re- 
ply is lost, but if such a search was 
begun. It never produced a candidate. 
Evans to Lovett, August 5, 1915, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Planning 
of the Institute. 

48. Board Minutes, July 11, 191 3, 

November 18, 19 14, November 17, 
191 5, July 10, 1920; Library Appro- 
priations, 19 1 6- 19 1 7, Faculty 

49. Sarah Lane, October 20, 1975, 
July I, 1977. 

50. Edgar Odell Lovett, "The 
Meaning of the New Institution," 51. 

51. Rice Institute Pamphlet 5, no. 
I (January 1918), 3. 

52. Lovett, "Fiistorical Sketch"; 
Announcements. 1918, pp. 87-88. 

53. Ibid. 

54. Commencement, vertical file, 

55. Faculty Minutes, February 18, 
1915, March 30, 1916; W F. Edwards 
to Baker, April 5, 19 15, May 20, 
1915, with Baker to Lovett, May 29, 
191 5, Lovett, Personal Papers, Unar- 
ranged. Edwards was an older faculty 
member and had been president of 
the University of Washington. Fie 
seems to have thought that he was to 
establish the chemistry department, 
but other sources indicate that Lov- 
ett was still looking for a chemistry 
professor. Edwards had the rank of 
lecturer. Edwards wrote some bitter 
letters to James A. Baker, Jr., but he 
evidently did not receive satisfacion. 
The quarrel between Lovett and Ed- 
wards seems to have been personal as 
well as professional and ended with 
Edwards leaving the faculty in 191 5. 
Whether he resigned or was fired is 
unclear, but he considered himself 
"dismissed." Lf he had wished to stay, 
however, it would appear that he 
chose a difficult way to do so, since 
in his last letters he did not hesitate 
to take the board to task for not do- 
ing what he saw as their duty; to get 
rid of Lovett. 

56. Guerard to Lovett, January 21, 
19 18, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records, Trustees. 

57. H. O. Murfee to Lovett, July 21, 
1909, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Planning of the Institute; A. L. 
FLughes to Lovett, July 23, 1916, Lov- 

ett, Personal Papers. 

58. F. Carrington Weems to Lovett, 
January 7, 1926; Lovett to Weems, 
January 26, 1926, both in Lovett, Per- 
sonal Papers. 

Chapter 4 '^ ^l-*-^- 

1. Hughes to Lovett, September 1, 
1 9 14, Lovett, Personal Papers; 
Thresher. March 11, 19 16, October 

18, 1916, December 15, 1916, Febru- 
ary I, 1917. 

2. There was the proviso that the 
faculty members on war duty be in 
condition physically and mentally to 
perform their faculty duties in order 
to return to the faculty. Board Min- 
utes, April 30, 1917, July II, 1917. 

3. Andrew Forest Muir, "Rice's Fu- 
ture Mapped in Early 1900s"; H. Mal- 
colm Lovett, March 29, 1978. 

4. Rice Institute Pamphlet 6, sup- 
plement (1919). The entire supple- 
ment is devoted to those who served 
in the war. 

5. |Lovett| to General Scott, April 

19, 191 7, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Office Records, World War 

I, Announcements. 1917, PP- 56-57. 

6. Thresher. September 29, 1917- 

7. Thresher. October 27, 1917; 
Campanile. 1918; H. Malcolm Lov- 
ett, March 29, 1978; Sarah Lane, July 
I, 1977; Florence McAllister Jame- 
son, February 3, 1978. 

8. Sarah Lane, July i, 1977; Flor- 
ence McAllister Jameson, February 3, 
1978; Hattie Lei Red, January 23, 
1976, June 28, 1977. 

9. Thresher, September 29, 1917. 

10. Tape, January 19, 191*^; 
Thresher, December 14, 1917, Febru- 
ary 2, 1 918. 

11. Tape, January 19, 1918. 

12. Thresher, December 14, 1917. 

13. Thresher, January 19, 19 18. 

14. Tape, January 19, 1918. 

15. Thresher, February 2, 1918. 

16. Ibid. 



17. Ibid., February 16, lyiS. 

18. Ibid.; Helen Batjer, August 10, 

ly. Rice was not alone in suffering 
the wrong man for the job. At Yale 
the retired army captain who took 
over the ROTC proved likewise un- 
able to handle his assignment, and 
school morale sagged. George Wilson 
Picrson, Yale College: An Educa- 
tional History, pp. 444, 4S9-71. 

20. Thresher. February 2, 1918; 
|Lovett| to President Maclaurin, Au- 
gust 7, 19 1 8, Presidents' Papers, Lov- 
ctt. Office Records, World War I; 
ROTC regulations, ibid.; Abstract of 
General Order Number 49, ibid.; 
Graustein affidavit, 19 19, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Department Records; 
Tape, lanuary 19, 1918. 

22. Thresher. February 16, 1918. 

IT,. Ibid., February is, 191 7, March 
I, 1917, March 24, 1917, February 2, 
1918, April 20, 1918, May 25, 1918. 

24. Faculty Minutes, April 25, 

25. Student Association Constitu- 
tion, Thresher, February 6, 1919, May 
25, 1919; File with constitutions for 
the Women's Council in Dean of Stu- 
dents, Cameron. 

26. "Three Gifts to the Rice Insti- 
tute, announced by the Trustees at 
the third Commencement Convoca- 
tion," Rice Institute Pamphlet 5, no. 
3 (July 1918), 153-58. 

27. Pierson, Yale College, pp. 
444-46, 473-74; Charles F. Thwing, 
The American Colleges and Univer- 
sities in the Great War, pp. 56-58; 
SATC, vertical file, WRC. 

28. Thresher. February 6, 1919; 
McCants to Lovett, August 30, 19 18; 
McCann to Lovett, August 17, 1918, 
both in Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Office Records, World War I; SATC, 
vertical file, WRC. 

29. Caldwell to Robert E. Vinson, 
October 24, 19 18; Commissioner 
Rees to Lovett, November 26, 19 18, 
both in Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 

Office Records, World War I; Pierson, 
Yale College, pp. 444-4S, 473-74; 
SATC, vertical file, WRC. 

30. Faculty Minutes, November 19, 
1918, December 5, 1918; Committee 
on Education and Special Training to 
A. H. Wheeler, lanuary 3, 19 19, Pres- 
idents' Papers, Lovett, Office Rec- 
ords, World War I; Thresher, February 
6, 1919. 

31. Axson to Baker, June 24, 1918, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, Trustees; Hawes to Lovett, 
lanuary 3, 19 19, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Department Records. 

32. Board Minutes, December 31, 
19 1 8, February 26, 19 19; Wheeler to 
Cohn, January 11, 1919; Lovett to 
Cohn, February 27, 1919, both in 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, Trustees; Floyd Seward 
Lear, "History and the Humanities in 
Our Earlier Years," 5. 

33. Caldwell to Lovett, July 16, 
1929, July 17, 1932, Lovett, Personal 
Papers, Unarranged; Board Minutes, 
July 14, 1919. 

34. Newspaper clippings on Hux- 
ley lectures. Presidents' Papers, Lov- 
ett, Miscellaneous Correspondence; 
Houston Chronicle. May 22, 1916; 
Baker to Lovett, February 15, 1918; 
D. K. Cason to Baker, February s, 

19 1 8, both in Presidents' Papers, Lov- 
ett, Office Records, Trustees. 

35. I?) to Board of Trustees, March 
II, 1918, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Office Records. 

36. Most of the information for 
this episode comes from the Lyford P. 
Edwards file in the vertical file, 
WRC. This file consists of newspaper 
clippings from several papers with 
the Houston Post and the Houston 
Chronicle predominant, dating from 
May 14, 1 9 19, to June 22, 1919. 
Other sources are "To the Public" 
(the trustees' statement; n.d.|. Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records; 
Lyford P. Edwards to Jerome Davis, 
November 17, 1931, Presidents' Pa- 

pers, Lovett, Office Records; Resolu- 
tion on Academic Freedom, Faculty 
Minutes, May 26, 1919; Muir, 
"Rice's Future"; Thresher. May 22, 
19 1 9. 

Chapter s '^ '^ 

1. Elisha D. Embree and Thomas B. 
Eaton, The Flying Owls: Rice Insti- 
tute from the Air 

2. Thresher, October 22, 1920, Sep- 
tember 22, 1922, October 12, 1923; 
Faculty Minutes, October 6, 1921; 
Weiser to Lovett, January 7, 1920, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Depart- 
ment Records; Chandler to Lovett, 
January 29, 1923, ibid. 

3. Faculty Minutes, June 5, 1919, 
February 12, 1920, March 11, 1920, 
April 8, 1920, June 4, 1921. 

4. Faculty Minutes, May 17, 1923; 
Thresher, October 12, 1923. 

5. Faculty Minutes, November 8, 
1923, November 22, 1923; Board 
Minutes, March 5, 1924. 

6. Board Minutes, March 5, 1924; 
Notice to the Faculty, November 21, 

1 1 924], Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records; Faculty Minutes, No- 
vember 8, 1923, November 22, 1923. 

7. Thresher. September 21, 1926; 
"Suggestions regarding the matter of 
admissions to the Rice Institute," 
from S. G. McCann, May 28, 1927, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records; Board Minutes, June 18, 

8. Caldwell to Lovett, December 8, 

1927, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records. 

9. Caldwell to Lovett, December 
19, 1927, ibid. 

ID. Caldwell to Lovett, May 4, 

1928, ibid. 

11. Ibid. 

12. Hughes to Lovett, June 25, 

19 19, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, De- 
partment Records; Wilson to Lovett, 
March 26, 1920, ibid.; Lovett to Wil- 



son, July 17, 1919, April 3, 1920, 
ibid.; Lovett to various university 
presidents, April 3, 1920, and replies, 
ibid.; Board Minutes, July 24, 19 18, 
May 21, 1919, July 14, 1919, May 22, 
1920, July 10, 1920, May 18, 1921. 

13. Board Minutes, July 10, 1920, 
June 27, 1923, July 23, 1924, July i, 
1925, June 22, 1926, June 18, 1929. 

14. Lovett to Baker, April 2, 1923, 
Lovett, Personal Papers. 

IS- Houston Post. February 15, 
1924, May 7, 1924. 

16. Houston Chronicle. June 9, 
1924; clipping with no paper given, 
dated June 10, 1924, both in Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 
Commencement; Houston Post. De- 
cember 12, 1924. 

17. Thresher, September 21, 1926, 
November 25, 1926; Houston Post, 
December 31, 1929, September 30, 
1930; Lovett to D. S. Jordan, May 9, 
1929, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records, Trustees. The registrar 
of Stanford replied that all that was 
necessary to charge tuition was an 
enabling act of the California legisla- 
ture. Houston Chronicle, December 
30, 1928; Houston Press, April i, 
1929; Slaughter to Baker, June 19, 
1929, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records, Trustees; Baker to 
Slaughter, June 20, 1929, ibid.; Board 
Minutes, May 20, 1929; Will Hogg to 
George S. Cohen, June 26, 1929, Lov- 
ett, Personal Papers. 

18. Chandler to Lovett, November 
28, 1933, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Department Records; McCants to 
Lovett, September 30, 1924, ibid.; 
Wilson to Lovett, June 3, 1924, ibid.; 
C. W Heaps to Lovett, July 5, 1924, 
ibid.; Lovett to W. S. Parish, June 6, 

1924, Lovett, Personal Papers; Fac- 
ulty Minutes, June 7, 1924; Thresher, 
October 3, 1924, October 30, 1925, 
April II, 1924. 

19. Wilson to Lovett, February 11, 

1925, February 15, 1925, March 2, 
1925, Lovett, Personal Papers, Unar- 

ranged; Lovett to Wilson, March 24, 

1925, ibid.; Baker to McCants, Febru- 
ary 12, 1925, ibid.; Board Minutes, 
March 20, 1925; Wilson to Lovett, 
April 10, 1923, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Department Records; W. S. 
Parish to Lovett, March 23, 1925, 
ibid.; Chandler to Lovett, May 5, 

1926, ibid.; Altenburg to Lovett, Au- 
gust 16, 1924, ibid. 

20. As president of the Institute, 
Lovett received a salary of Si 2,000 in 

1920, which was raised to Si6,ooo in 

1 92 1. This was very high for the 
South and higher than all the col- 
leges studied by the registrar of 
Georgetown College in 1925. "Salary 
Study by the Registrar of George- 
town College," 1925, in Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records. Board 
Minutes, January 8, 1926, June 21, 

21. Weiser to Lovett, March 26, 

1927, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, De- 
partment Records; Evans to Lovett, 
January 14, 1929, Lovett, Personal 
Papers, Unarranged; Watkm to Lov- 
ett, May 27, 1929, ibid. 

22. Altenburg to Lovett, August 
16, 1924, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Department Records; Thresher, April 
3, 1925- 

23. Houston Chronicle, April 22, 
1929, April 29, 1929. Miss Dean was 
apparently never appointed as the 
Chronicle recommended. 

24. Faculty Minutes, January 15, 
1920; James U. Teague, June 29, 
1977; John Parish, September 28, 

25. Board Minutes, March 21, 
1927; Lovett, speech to Faculty Club, 
October i, 1931, Lovett, Personal Pa- 
pers, Speeches; Thresher, January 22, 

1920, March 25, 1927, November 24, 

26. Faculty Minutes, March 6, 
1919, May 28, 1919, February 24, 

1921, May 5, 1921, March 25, 1921, 
January 12, 1922, February 23, 1922, 
November 20, 1922, June 10, 1922, 

May 7, 1925, June 6, 192s, February 
II, 1926, April 15, 1926, January 13, 
1928, February 13, 1928, June 6, 
1928; Thresher, May 15, 1925; An- 
nouncements, 1927, pp. 38-39, 

27. Faculty Minutes, November 4, 
1920, June 2, 1926, June 5, 1926, June 
4, 1927; Thresher, April 29, 1927; 
Announcements, 1926, p. 52-53; 
1927, pp. 55-56. 

28. Faculty Minutes, April 3, 19 19, 
November 18, 1920, December 2, 
1920, February 24, 192 1; Thresher, 
February 27, 1919, March 6, 1919, 
October 29, 1920, January 7, 1921, 
October 21, 1927; H. K. Humphrey 
to [?], November i, 1927, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records. 

29. Lmdsey, Dyer, Hinckley, and 
DePrato were in track and field 
sports, and Underwood and Dyer 
again were consensus All-Conference 
in football. Football '77; Southwest 
Conference Roster and Record Book, 
pp. 61-69; Basketball 'j8: The 1978 
Southwest Conference Roster and 
Record Book, pp. 24-29; Southwest 
Conference 1978 Spring Sports Me- 
dia Guide, pp. 24-36; Watkin to 
Lovett, December 9, 1923, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records; 
Thresher. December 14, 1923. There 
is some evidence that President Lov- 
ett was about to ask for Arbuckle's 
resignation, but whether he did is 
unclear. At any rate, Arbuckle did re- 
sign. Lovett to Arbuckle, November 
28, 1923, marked "Not sent," Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records. 

30. Watkin to Lovett, January 29, 
1924, January 30, 1924, February 3, 
1924, February 6, 1924, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records; 
Watkin to Lovett, February 3, 1924, 
William Ward Watkin Papers, WRC. 

31. McCants to Watkm, February 
7, 1924, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Office Records; Board Minutes, Feb- 
ruary 12, 1924, April 2, 1924; April 
25, 1924- 



32. Thresher, February 19, 1924, 
March 28, 1924, April 11, 1924, April 
18, 1924, May ^, 1924, May 10, 1924, 
September 18, 1924; Hubert E. Bray, 
June 18, 1976; Gaylord and Louise 
Johnson, February 20, 1978; Jack Ag- 
ness, "All About the Heisman," 
Houston Post. December 4, 1977. 

33. Alex C. Humphreys to Palmer 
E. Pierce, lune 18, 1924; Pierce to 
Heisman, July 7, 1924; Watkin to 
Heisman, July 11, 1924; Heisman to 
Watkin, July 15, 1924, July 16, 1924; 
Pierce to Watkin, July 16, 1924; 
Humphreys to Watkin, luly 17, 1924; 
Heisman to Lovett, July 18, 1924; 
Watkin to Frank W. Nicholson, No- 
vember 4, 1924, all in Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Lovett, Office Records. 

34. Thresher. April 3, 1925, April 
10, 1925, May I, 1925, October 9, 
1925. Heisman also did not like 
the idea of female cheerleaders; 
Thresher. November 7, 1924. East 
Hall, before Heisman appropriated it, 
had been the place for seniors and 
"big men on campus" to live. Dean 
G. Holmes Richter, who was one of 
the tutors for the athletes, remarked 
that he did not know how Heisman 
managed to get hold of that building. 
G. Holmes Richter, July 5, 1977. 

35. Gaylord and Louise Johnson, 
February 20, 1978. 

36. Thresher. January 21, 1927; 
Football '77, p. 64. 

37. Heisman Terms, November 21, 
1927, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records; Lovett to Heisman, De- 
cember I, 1927, ibid.; Heisman to 
Lovett, December 2, 1927, ibid.; 
Board Minutes, December g, 1927; 
Thresher. December 9, 1927; Gaylord 
and Louise Johnson, February 20, 

38. Watkin to Baker, December 5, 
1927, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records. 

39. Baker to Lamar Fleming, Jr., 
February 20, 1929, Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Lovett, Office Records, Trust- 

ees; "Note on the Proposed Course in 
Physical Education," from H. A. Wil- 
son, December 4, I92|8?|, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records. 

40. Faculty Minutes, December 1 3, 

41. Board Minutes, February 27, 
1929; Fleming to Baker, February i s, 
1929, March 6, 1929, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 

42. Announcements. 1930, pp. 
95-99; Watkin to Lovett, January 16, 
1929, January 17, 1929, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Department Records. 

43. Harris Masterson, Jr., to Lovett, 
September 30, 192 1, Autry-Master- 
son, Lovett Papers, WRC; Thresher. 
September 30, 1921, October 23, 
1947; Autry House, vertical file, 

44. Henry A. Tillett, December 23, 
1975; Programs for the Rice Institute 
Engineering Show, WRC; Thresher. 
May 13, 1920, February 4, 1921, 
April 23, 1926. 

4v Thresher. November s, 1920, 
November 19, 1920, October 6, 1922, 
November 7, 1930, May 6, 1921, May 
12, 1922, February 8, 1924; Cam- 
panile. 1922. The pageant for the 
first May Fete presented the poem 
from the opening, "Texas, A Demo- 
cratic Ode." Article on Archi-Arts 
from Pencil Points (March 1922I, in 
Watkin Papers; Thresher. November 
II, 1921, October 19, 1923. 

46. Thresher. October 22, 1920, 
April 8, 1921, November 3, 1922, 
September 25, 1925, October 16, 
192s, October 23, 1925; Andrew For- 
est Muir, "Rice's Future Mapped in 
Early 1900s." 

47. Thresher. January 26, 1923, Oc- 
tober 19, 1923, November 2, 1923, 
September 18, 1924, February is, 
1924, September 26, 1924, October 
17, 1924, October 24, 1924, October 
31, 1924, November 27, 1924, Febru- 
ary 27, 1925- 

48. Thresher. March 27, 19 19; 

Houston Chronicle. March 29, 1929. 

49. Constitution of the Student 
Association, 1922, in Dean of Stu- 
dents File, Cameron; Thresher. Janu- 
ary 13, 1922, March 10, 1922. 

so. Caldwell to Lovett, May 6, 
1922, Faculty Minutes, Early Com- 
mittee Lists, December 2, 1920, June 
S, 1922; Thresher. March 2, 1962; 
Fred J. Stancliff, September 28, 1977; 
"Statement read to the students of 
Rice at a called meeting held in the 
Physics Amphitheatre at twelve- 
fifteen O'clock, Thursday, June 
Eighth," June 8, 1922, Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Lovett, Office Records. The 
clubs that were abolished can be seen 
in the Campanile. 1922. They were 
the Tattlers, Blue Moon, Hoots, 
Sigma Beta, Idlers, Alpha Rho, Samu- 
rai, and the Ku Klux Klan. The Toil- 
ers had disbanded themselves in May 
"in the interest of Rice Institute." 
Thresher. May 26, 1922. 

5 1. "Statement read to the stu- 
dents," June 8, 1922, Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Lovett, Office Records. 

52. Fred J. Stancliff, oral communi- 
cation, March 28, 1979. 

53. Thresher. September 15, 1922. 

54. Thresher. September 15, 1922, 
October 13, 1922, October 20, 1922, 
November 28, 1930; Faculty Min- 
utes, October 19, 1922, January 18, 

55. Thresher. September 21, 1923, 
September 28, 1923, February 23, 
1924, January 22, 1926, April 16, 
1926, March 25, 1927, April 15, 
1927; Faculty Minutes, November 8, 

56. Board Minutes, October 5, 
1927; Thresher. May 18, 1928, Octo- 
ber 12, 1928, November 9, 1928, Jan- 
uary II, 1929, November 8, 1929, 
November 28, 1930. 

57. Thresher. November 2s, 1920, 
December 3, 1920, November 22, 

58. Ella Lonn to Lovett, April 7, 
1922; Pamphlet, AAUW, 192s; Mary 



S. Torrens, Report of AAUW Con- 
ference, April 1926; Lonn to Lovett, 
March 8, 1927; Lovett to Mrs. Leata 
Mercer, April 14, i9}0; Mary H. 
Smith to Edwina Wiess, November 4, 
1936; Wheeler to Wiess, November 
30, 1936; Wheeler to Mrs. Don Kim- 
mel, November 14, 1945, all in Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records. 

59. Oscar M. Voorhees to Lovett, 
December 30, 1921, September 26, 
1922, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records; John J. McGill to Lov- 
ett, May 23, 1927, ibid.; Thresher. 
October 5, 1928, January 25, 1929, 
March i, 1929, March 8, 1929, 
March 21, 1930. 

Chapter 6 JA ^^3^ ' 

1. Outline of a System of Ac- 
counts, Budgets, and Reports for the 
Board of Trustees, May 30, 1947, 
Budget File, Comptroller's Office. 

2. Baker to Lovett, March 26, 1932, 
Lovett, Personal Papers, Unarranged; 
Cohn to Baker, March 25, 1932, 
ibid.; Board Minutes, May 25, 1932. 

3. Board Minutes, June 24, 193 1, 
June 2, 1932. 

4. Board Minutes, June 5, 1932, 
June 8, 1932; Wilson to Lovett, April 
4, 1932, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Department Records; Baker to Lov- 
ett, June 6, 1932, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Office Records, Trustees. 

5. Board Minutes, June 29, 1932. 

6. Wilson to Lovett, June 9, 1932, 
Lovett, Personal Papers, Unarranged; 
Board Minutes, June 29, 1932. 

7. Board Minutes, June i, 1932, 
August 24, 1932; Report on William 
M. Rice Institute for the Advance- 
ment of Literature, Science and Art, 
prepared for the Board of Trustees by 
the Survey Committee, May 7, 1945, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, Trustees (cited hereafter as 
Survey Committee Report). 

8. Board Minutes, April 11, 1933; 

Houston Chronicle. April 12, 1933, 
April 13, 1933, September 8, 1933; 
Thresher. April 14, 1933; Baker to 
Trustees, April 3, 1933, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records. Board 
v/as provided for the students at cost, 
and the price fluctuated from month 
to month. The initial cost v^'as $1.05 
in 1931; it dropped to 94(1: in 1933, 
rose to 981 in 1934, and to $1.00 in 
1936. Rooms had previously cost 
from $78 to $115 in 1932, depending 
on the size of the room and the num- 
ber of roommates. The new plan 
charged everyone a flat rate of $90. 
Announcements, 1931, 1932, 1933, 
1934, 1935, 1936- 

9. Baker to Lovett, February 24, 
1933, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records; Board Minutes, May 26, 

ID. Houston Chronicle, December 
3, 1934, December 6, 1934, Decem- 
ber 7, 1934, July 28, 1938, July 29, 
1938; Thresher. December 7, 1934; 
Board Minutes, May 18, 1939, De- 
cember 19, 1934. 

1 1. Baker to Lovett, June 4, 1936, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, Trustees; Weiser to Lovett, 
August 9, 1936, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Department Records; Board 
Minutes, June 3, 1936; Faculty Min- 
utes, June 6, 1936. 

12. Houston Chronicle, December 
23, 1936, January 8, 1937. 

13. Board Minutes, December 24, 
1936; Houston Chronicle, December 
23, 1936, January 8, 1937; Thresher, 
September 15, 1938; Baker to Lovett, 
October 19, 1938, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Office Records, Trustees. 

14. Houston Chronicle, July 14, 
1933, July 30, 1933, September 11, 
1933, October 11, 1931; Thresher. 
March 6, 1931, March 20, 1931; 
Sarah Lane, August 10, 1976. 

15. Hubert E. Bray, June 18, 1976; 
Wilson to Lovett, June 9, 1932, Lov- 
ett, Personal Papers, Unarranged. 

16. J. D. Thomas, July 13, 1977; 

Carroll Camden, September 20, 
1977; Evans to Lovett, October 12, 
1933, Presidents' Papers, Department 
Records; Board Minutes, October 18, 
193 3; Houston Chronicle, October 
27, 1933- 

17. Watkin to F. Browne, February 
I, 1934, Watkin Papers; Survey Com- 
mittee Report, March 8, 1945, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 
Trustees; Thresher. March i, 1935; 
Faculty Minutes, April 15, 1935- 

18. Board Minutes, April 20, 1938, 
August 4, 1905, February 25, 1942; 
Lovett to Nicholas Murray Butler, 
October 29, 1935, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Office Records, Trustees. 

19. Scott to Lovett, December 14, 
1933/ Presidents' Papers, Lovett, De- 
partment Records; Weiser to Lovett, 
July 28, 1934, ibid.; Houston Chroni- 
cle, June 4, 1933, November 28, 

20. Thresher, January 17, 1936; 
Houston Chronicle, March 11, 1932; 
A. C. Lederer to Rice University His- 
torical Commission, May 10, 1978, 
in possession of the commission; 
Eula Goss Wintermann, July 24, 

21. Baker to Lovett, April 26, 19387" 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, Trustees; Lawrence Sochat 
to Baker, April 22, 1938, ibid.; H. 
Meyer to Editor, Houston Press, n.d., 
clipping, ibid.; Lovett to Baker, June 
20, 1938, ibid.; Thresher. April 29, 

22. Baker to James W. Rockwell, 
October 6, 1937, in Board Minutes, 
October 13, 1927; Thresher January 
22, 1937; Andre Bourgeois, Novem- 
ber 28, 1977. 

23. Thresher. October 22, 1937. 

24. Board Minutes, May 24, 1922, 
November 28, 1928, May 28, 1930. 

25. Thresher. October 28, 1932, 
November 4, 1932; Houston Chroni- 
cle. November 4, 1932, November 
10, 1932, March 20, 1934. 

26. Thresher November 28, 1930, 



September is, 1932, Oetober 7, lyu, 
September 13, 1934, September 19, 
1940, September 27, 1940, Oetober 4, 

1940, October 17, 1940, October 10, 

1941, October 2, 1942; Houston 
Chronicle, September 14, 1933, Sep- 
tember 27, 19??, October 24, 19^3, 
September 11, 1934, September 19, 
1935, September 24, 19U'; news- 
paper clippmgs with no papers 
named, dated September 16, 1938, 
October i, 1938, September 14, 1939, 
September 19, 1940, September 24, 

1940, Oetober 5, 1940, September 18, 

1941, September 27, 1941, from a 
collection of newspaper clippings 
made by Dr. Floyd S. Lear and given 
to the Woodson Research Center by 
the Rice University Historical Com- 
mission, cited hereafter as Lear 

27. Thresher, April 11, 1930, Oeto- 
ber 28, 1938; Pound to Lovett, April 
9, 1938, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Department Records. 

28. Thresher, March 17, i933, 
March 6, 1936, March 13, 193''^; 
Baker to Lovett, March 30, 1933, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records; Houston Chronicle, April 
28, 1933, May 4, 1933, May 7, I933; 
Lear clippings, March 7, 1940. 

29. Houston Chronicle, October 
27; 1933/ October 28, 1933, October 
29/ 1933/ October 30, 1933, Novem- 
ber 9, 1933, November 10, 1933, No- 
vember 27, 1933, November 28, 
1933; Houston Post, November 8, 
1933; Thresher, November 3, 1933, 
November 10, 1933, November 24, 
1933; 1. D. Thomas, luly 13, 1977- 

30. Cooperative store indenture in 
Board Minutes, May 31, 1938; Hans- 
zen to A. H. Fulbnght, August 26, 
1947, Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records; Fulbright to Hans- 
zcn, September 2, 1947, ibid.; 
Thresher, May ii, 1937, May 23, 
1937/ October 4, 1938, February 17, 

31. Andrew Forest Muir, "Rice's 

Future Mapped in Early 1900s"; 
Thresher, April 24, 193ft; Lear clip- 
pings. May 28, 1939. 

32. Houston Chronicle, February 
10, 1933, February 12, 1933, Novem- 
ber 30, 1933, December 9, 1933, 15e- 
cember 10, 1933; Houston Post. 
February 10, 1933, February 11, 
1933; Thresher, February 17, 1933, 
December 15, 1933. 

33. Gaylord and Louise Johnson, 
February 20, 1978; Clark Ncalon, 
February 2, 1978. 

34. Clark Nealon, February 2, 

35. Board Minutes, October s, 
1938; Clark Nealon, February 2, 
1978; Football '71: Southwest Con- 
ference Roster and Record Book, 

p. 14. 

36. Football 'jj, pp. 60-6S; South- 
west Conference 1978 Spring Sports 
Media Guide, pp. 24-36, 73-74, 84; 
Basketball '78: The 1978 Southwest 
Conference Roster and Record Book. 
pp. 26-29, 76-77; Houston Chroni- 
cle, March 5, 1934, March 6, 1940, 
March 20, 1934, April 8, 1934, Au- 
gust 21, 1934. 

37. Board Minutes, December is, 
19^7, lanuary 26, 1938, March 30, 

1938; Clark Nealon, February 2, 
1978; Houston Chronicle, April 27, 

38. Houston Post, December is, 
1939; Thresher. January 12, 1940; 
Football '77. PP- 60-65. 

39. Thresher, February 15, i935, 
February 23, 1935, March 1936. 

40. Thresher. March 3, 1939, Sep- 
tember 14, 1939, 

September 29, 1939/ October 14, 
1941; Houston Chronicle, October 

'7' '''^'- . Ciy^ 


chapter 7 

'■'iU ^^'^^ 

I. Naval ROTC, vertical file, 
WRC; Thresher, September 18, 1941. 
December 12, 1941, December 20, 

1941. It appears that the administra- 
tion had applied for an Army ROTC 
unit in 1940. Lovett said that the 
unit had been approved by the War 
Department, but it was never estab- 
lished before the war. Thresher. Sep- 
tember 27/ 1940. 

2. The provision for dental, law, 
and medical students remained in 
effect only for the war years. Faculty 
Minutes, February s, 1942; Board 
Minutes, February 4, 1942. 

3. L. E. Denfeld to Lovett, March 
II, 1943, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Office Records, World War II; "Man- 
ual for the Operation of a Navy V-12 
Unit," Navy V-12 Bulletin, no. 22 
(lune 18, 1943), ibid.; Board Minutes, 
March 17, 1943; Naval ROTC, verti- 
cal file, WRC. 

4. Thresher, April 9, 1943; L. E. 
Denfeld to Lovett, March 11, 1943, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, World War II; Board Min- 
utes, April 7, 1943; "The Navy Col- 
lege Training Program — V-12, 
Curricula Schedules," Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Lovett, Office Records, Navy. 

5. Thresher, July 8, 1943, August 
19, 1943, September 9, 1943, April 9, 
1943; "The Navy College Training 
Program — V-12, Curricula Sched- 
ules," Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Of- 
fice Records, Navy; "V-12 and 
NROTC Routine," ibid.; Campanile. 
1944, vols. I and 2; Naval ROTC, 
vertical file, WRC; George Holmes 
Riehter, July 5, i977; Houston 
Chronicle, June 25, 1943. 

6. Andrew Forest Muir, "Rice's Fu- 
ture Mapped in Early 1900s"; Board 
Minutes, March 3, 1943; Lovett to 
Meyer, February 25, 1943, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Department Records; 
Thresher. April 20, 1944. 

7. Announcements, 1947, pp. 
129-35; I9S2, pp. 187-90; Report 
to the President from the Registrar, 
1946, 1947, Registrar's Office Files. 

8. Board Minutes, April 16, 1941; 
Houston Post, November 23, 1940, 



November 24, 1940; Houston Chron- 
icle, November 23, 1940. 

9. Board Minutes, April 23, 1941. 

10. Board Minutes, May 14, 1941; 
Houston Post. May 18, 1941, May 20, 
1941; Houston Chronicle. May 18, 
1941, May 20, 1941. 

11. Board Minutes, August 13, 

1941, October 8, 1941, May 6, 1942; 
Thresher, September 18, 1941; Hous- 
ton Chronicle. August 14, 1942, (une 
2, 1942. 

12. Houston Chronicle, December 
28, 1941, October 15, 1941. 

13. Board Minutes, August 6, 1941, 
November 9, 1938, December 7, 

14. Board Minutes, January 9, 
1940, March 20, 1940; William A. 
Kirkland, |uly 19, 1977. 

15. Board Minutes, February 11, 

1942, May 6, 1942, February i, 195 1. 

16. Charter of the William M. Rice 
Institute for the Advancement of Lit- 
erature. Science and Art. WRC. 

17. Board Minutes, October 7, 
1942, November 9, 1942, November 
18, 1942, November 28, 1942, De- 
cember 18, 1942; Auditor's Report as 
of June 30, 1943, Presidents' Papers, 
Lovett, Fiscal Records; H. Malcolm 
Lovett, June 27, 1977; Thresher, De- 
cember 4, 1942; Houston Chronicle. 
November 24, 1942, December 18, 

1942, December 19, 1942, January i, 

1943, January 16, 1944, April 5, 1944. 

18. Board Minutes, July 6, 1944, 
September 17, 1948; Houston Chron- 
icle. March 22, 1935, July 6, 1944; 
Thresher, December 9, 1955- 

19. Carl M. Knapp to Board of 
Trustees, May 30, 1944, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records; Lov- 
ett to Brown, July 20, 1944, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 

20. Board Minutes, February 28, 
1945; Lovett speech on the naming 
of Wiess Hall, March 25, 1950, Lov- 
ett, Personal Papers, Speeches. 

21. Survey Committee Report, 

May 7, 1945, 

22. Ibid.; "Rice Looks Forward," 
speech by H. C. Wiess, in Wiess to 
Scott, November 8, 1945, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records, 

23. Board Minutes, July 30, 1945. 

24. Board Minutes, October 11, 
1945; "Rice Looks Forward," speech 
by Wiess, in Wiess to Scott, Novem- 
ber 8, 1945, Presidents' Papers, Lov- 
ett, Office Records, Trustees. 

25. Board Minutes, April 8, 1942; 
Lovett to W M. Rice, Jr., November 
19, 1942, Lovett, Personal Papers, 
Correspondence; Lovett to Cleve- 
land, February 22, 1944, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records, Trust- 
ees; Cleveland to Lovett, June 14, 

1944, ibid.; Wiess to W K. Lewis, 
March 31, 1945, ibid. 

26. Survey Committee Report, 
May 7, 1945- 

27. Remarks of J. T. Scott, April 10, 

1945, in Faculty Minutes, April 14, 

28. Faculty Minutes, April 14, 
1945; Preliminary report submitted 
to the Trustees of the Rice Institute 
by the Committee selected by the 
Faculty for consultation on the 
choice of a new President, April 25, 
1945, Treasurer's Office Correspon- 
dence, Retirement of Dr. Lovett and 
Selection of a new President, Trea- 
surer's Office; George Fiolmes Rich- 
ter, July 5, 1977, March 9, 1978. 

29. Wiess left notes of his meetings 
and phone calls during his travels, 
and without these notes it would 
have been very difficult to trace the 
hiring process. Very little correspon- 
dence with the candidates or their 
supporters survives. Notes and other 
enclosures from Wiess are with 
Weiss to Members of the Board, June 
9, 1945, Presidents' Papers, Lovett, 
Office Records, Trustees; Wiess to 
Scott, June 12, 1945, ibid.; Wiess to 
Members of the Board, June 15, 1945, 
ibid.; Wiess to Members of the Board, 

July 1 3, 1945, ibid.; Wiess to Mem- 
bers of the Board, November 20, 
1945, ibid. Other sources for this sec- 
tion are Faculty Minutes, April 14, 
1945; Board Minutes, April 11, 1945, 
January 4, 1946; McKillop, Richter, 
and Ryon to Trustees, April 25, 1945, 
Treasurer's Office Correspondence, 
Retirement of Dr. Lovett and Selec- 
tion of a new President; Wiess to W 
K. Lewis, March 31, 1945, Presidents' 
Papers, Lovett, Office Records, Trust- 
ees; George Holmes Richter, July 5, 
1977, March 9, 1978. 

30. Board Minutes, January 4, 
1946; Press Release, January 4, 1946, 
Treasurer's Office Correspondence, 
Retirement of Dr. Lovett and Selec- 
tion of a new President; H. Malcolm 
Lovett, May 19, 1976, June 27, 1977, 
March 29, 1978; William A. Kirk- 
land, July 19, 1977. 

31. Board Minutes, June 27, 1946, 
May 21, 1947, July 28, 1947; Hans- 
zen to Trustees, August 6, 1947, 
Presidents' Papers, Houston, Office 
Records, Board Minutes; Hanszen to 
Trustees, August 26, 1947, ibid.; Re- 
port of Committee on the System of 
Accounts, Budgets and Reports, June 
2, 1947, ibid.; Report of Committee 
on the System of Accounts, Budgets, 
and Reports, May 30, 1947, Outline 
of System, Budget File, Comptroller's 
Office; Kirkland to Samuel L. Fuller, 
March 19, 1947, in possession of the 
Rice University Historical Commis- 
sion; Shamblin to Trustees, May 4, 
1964, ibid.; Houston Chronicle. No- 
vember 13, 1946, March 5, 1947; 
Thresher. November 7, 1946, March 
6, 1947. 

32. Sketches from American Men 
of Science and Who's Who in Amer- 
ica in Wiess to Scott, June 12, 1945, 
Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records, Trustees; Thresher. April 
10, 1947. 

33. Thresher, April 10, 1947. 

34. Muir, "Rice's Future"; Board 
Minutes, December 4, 1947. 



35. Muir, "Rice's Future"; Hous- 
ton's address to the faculty, March 
i6, 1946, in Faculty Minutes, March 
16, 1946. 

36. Houston's address to the fac- 
ulty, March 16, 1946, in Faculty Min- 
utes, March 16, 1946. 

37. Faculty Minutes, March 16, 

38. The assistants to the president 
were fames C. Morehead, William H. 
Masterson, John E. Parish, Thad 
Marsh, and Sanford W. Higgin- 
botham. Thresher. April 10, i947; 
James C. Morehead, April 6, 1978; 
William H. Masterson, October 11, 
1977; George Holmes Richter, July s, 
1977, March 9, 1978. 

39. Faculty Mmutes, April 15, 
1946, June 28, 1946, October 15, 

1946, November 6, 1946, April 23, 

1947, April 18, 1949; Mmutes for the 
Committee on Examinations and 
Standing, May s. 1948, Undergradu- 
ate Dean's Office; Houston Chroni- 
cle, December 2, 1946, August 14, 
1947; Announcements. 1946, pp. 
51-60, 106- 7, 109-16, 131-33; 
1947, pp. 19-30, 44-52; 1949, pp. 
57-67; 1950, pp. 61-74; George 
Holmes Richter, July 5, 1977, March 
9, 1978. 

40. Faculty Minutes, November 6, 
1946; Thresher. December 5, 1946; 
Announcements, 1940, pp. 37-42; 
1947, pp. 19-27. 

41. Announcements. 1947, pp. 

42. Board Minutes, April 4, 1946, 
May 8, 1946, May 29, 1946, March 6, 
1947, October 30, 1947; Thresher. 
October 3, 1946; Houston Chronicle, 
September 18, 1947, September 12, 

43. Thresher. March 22, 1947, May 
22, 1947; Board Minutes, April 4, 
1946; Houston Chronicle. November 
21, 1946. 

44. Thresher. October 9, 1947; Co- 
operative Committee on Library 
Buildings, Report, April 27-28, 1945, 

Presidents' Papers, Lovett, Office 
Records; John E. Burchard to Trust- 
ees, January i, 1946, ibid.; Heaps to 
Burchard, January 7, 1946, ibid. 

45. Board Mmutes, March 11, 

1946, May 6, 1946, October 30, 1947, 
December 3, 1947, December 4, 
1947; Hanszen to Trustees, April 29, 

1947, Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records, Board Minutes; 
Houston Chronicle. November 8, 
1947, June 29, 1946. 

46. Thresher. December 18, 1947; 
Houston Chronicle, December 22, 

1947, November 21, 1948, August 
15, 1949, October 30, 1949. 

47. Board Minutes, October 30, 
1947; Houston Chronicle. March 12, 

48. Program for the opening of Ab- 
ercrombie Laboratory, November 20, 

1948, Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records, Abercrombie; McVey 
to Rather, November 13, 1948, ibid.; 
Maurice J. Sullivan to Hanszen, April 
7, 1947, ibid.; Thresher. February 12, 

1949, McVey also did the sculptures 
for the San Jacmto Monument. 

49. The Houstons had been pro- 
vided a house to live in until the 
house on campus was completed. 
Houston Chronicle, July 20, 1949; 
Thresher, February 9, 1949, March 
24, 1950; Announcements. 1950, pp. 
7-8, 42; 1952, pp. 7-8, 44-4S- 

50. Burchard to Wiess, October 9, 

1947, Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records, Stadium; Burchard to 
Wiess, November 6, 1947, ibid.; 
Houston Chronicle. December 2, 
1948-February 12, 1949, May 6, 
1949, February 15 -July 12, 1949, No- 
vember 15-18, 1949, November 20, 
1949, November 23-December 4, 
1949; Board Minutes, January 9, 

1948, November 17, I949, December 
30, 1949. 

51. Board Mmutes, January 9, 
1948, November 17, 1949, December 
30, 1949, October 25, 195 1; Jess 
Neely, October 10, 1977; Thresher. 

January 13, 1950, September 15, 
1950; Houston Chronicle, November 
20, 1949, November 23, 1949, De- 
cember 4, 1949, December 30, 1949, 
April 5, 1950, October 24, 1951. 

52. Jess Neely, October 10, 1977; 
Houston Chronicle, August 31, 1949, 
November 5, 1949, December 3, 
1950, November 5, 195O; Announce- 
ments, 1950, pp. 7-8. 

53. Thresher, January 16, 1954, 
February 27, 1942, May 15, 1942, Oc- 
tober 16, 1942, December 18, 1942, 
February 19, 1943, November 18, 
1943, November 26, 1943, January 4, 
1945, May 3, 1945, May 23, 194S; 
Campanile, 1944. 

54. Thresher. May 17, 1945. 

55. Thresher. September 20, 1945. 

56. Annoimcements. 1941, pp. 
52-55; 1948, pp. 64-67; Houston 
Chronicle. February 29, 1948; Report 
to the President from the Registrar 
|i948-49:|. Registrar's Office. 

57. Report to the Faculty from the 
Committee on the Coordination of 
Freshmen (also called Committee on 
the Freshman Course), in Faculty 
Minutes, June i, 1950; Minutes, 
Committee on the Freshman Course, 
November 15, 1948, January 17, 

1949, January 20, 1949, WRC. 

58. Mmutes, Committee on the 
Freshman Course, March 6, 1950, 
April 8, 1950, April 17, 1950; Com- 
mittee report in Faculty Minutes, 
June I, 1950; Faculty Minutes, April 
II, 1950; G. Williams to Committee 
on Examinations and Standing, 
marked received March 30, 1950, 
with Minutes of the Committee on 
Examinations and Standing, April 10, 

1950, Undergraduate Dean's Office; 
Committee on Examinations and 
Standing to Committee on the Fresh- 
man Course, April 10, 1950, ibid.; 
Thresher. May 18, 1949. 

59. Faculty Minutes, February 13, 
1948, April 23, 1947; Thresher. 
March 25, 1948, April 29, 1948, 
March 25, 1948. 



60. Thresher. October 31, 1946, 
February 13, 1947, March 6, 1947, 
December 11, 1948, December 9, 
1949; Faculty Minutes, November 
II, 1948. 

61. Thresher. May 2, 1946. 

62. Thresher. April 17, 1947, Febru- 
ary 17, 1950, May 12, 1950; Nancy 
Moore Eubank, February 22, 1978; 
Clara Mohr Kotch, February 10, 
1978; Paula Meredith Mosle, Septem- 
ber 7, 1978. 

63. Thresher, April 17, 1947, Febru- 
ary 17, 1950, May 12, 195O; Paula 
Meredith Mosle, September 7, 1978; 
Clara Mohr Kotch, February 10, 

64. Thresher, September 20, 194s, 
October 3, 1946, October 24, 1946. 

65. Thresher, October 2, 1947. 

66. Thresher, September 22, 1948, 
September 25, 1948, October 2, 1948, 
October 9, 1948, April 30, 1949, May 
7, 1949, May 14, 1949, September 30, 

1949, October 7, 1949, lanuary 13, 
1956; Houston Chronicle, September 
30, 1949, October 26, 1949, October 
30, 1949, March 15, 1950, March 16, 

1950, March 17, 1950; Raymond L. 
Lankford, January 30, 1978. 

67. Jess Neely October 10, 1977; 
Virgil C. Eikenberg, February 9, 
1978; Football '77' Southwest Con- 
ference Roster and Record Book, pp. 

68. Houston Chronicle. October 
21, 1948, October 24, 1948; Jess 
Neely, October 10, 1977. 

69. Basketball '78: The 1978 
Southwest Conference Roster and 
Record Book, pp. 24-29, 68-70; 
Southwest Conference 1978 Spring 
Sports Media Guide, pp. 24-36, 

70. The Book of the Opening, 

Chapter 8 ^_^^ / ^b'^ * 

1. Thresher, September 22, 1950; 
Houston Chronicle, February 26, 

1950, December 31, 1950; Houston 
Post, February 26, 1950. 

2. Board Minutes, May 2, 1951, 
May 5, 1954, September 30, 1959, 
April 22, 1953. 

3. Hanszen to Board of Trustees, 
September 5, 1947, Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Houston, Office Records. 

4. Fleming to Trustees, September 
15, 1948, Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, 
On Campus, 1961-1963; William A. 
Kirkland, July 19, 1977. 

5. Board Minutes, August 5, 1949, 
September 23, 1949, May 27, 1953; 
Houston Chronicle. September 8, 
1949; William A. Kirkland, July 19, 
1977; James U. Teague, June 29, 
1977; Herbert Allen, September 27, 

6. The donor's stipulation that the 
music school be housed m a building 
in the style of early colonial Virgin- 
ian architecture was a small source 
of worry but was somehow finally 
settled. Board Minutes, November 
24, 1950, February i, 195 i, March 8, 

1951, May 2, 1951, January 24, 1952, 
December i, 1954, April 22, 1953; 
Houston Chronicle, September 18, 
1950, December 5, 1950, January 6, 

1952, June I, 1958; Houston Post, 
December 5, 1950, June 6, 1962. 

7. Board Minutes, February 4, 

1953, September 23, 1953, May 5, 
1954; Announcements, 1956, p. 4. 
The pledge is now $15,000, payable 
over a period of ten years. 

8. Board Minutes, February 23, 
1955; Faculty Minutes, November 
22, 1955; The President's Discre- 
tionary Research Fund, August 24, 
i960. Presidents' Papers, Houston, 

9. Houston Chronicle, September 
5, 1950, February 8, 1953, March 22, 

1954, May 31, 1956, March 30, 1957, 
June 8, 1956, November 18, 1958, 

January 6, 1959, April 24, 1959, May 
31, 1959; June 4, 1959; Houston Post. 
May 12, 1957; Announcements, 
1959, pp. 38-43; i960, pp. 62-66. 

10. Board Minutes, July 25, 1956; 
Houston to Robert M. Hutchins, Feb- 
ruary 28, 1951, Presidents' Papers, 
Houston, Office Records; Ford Foun- 
dation College Grants Advisory 
Committee Questionnaire, ibid.; 
Houston to Joseph M. McDaniel, Jr., 
June 24, 1957, ibid.; Survey of Sal- 
aries, ibid.; Thresher, December 16, 
1955; Houston Chronicle, June 24, 

11. Board Minutes, August 28, 
1950; Thresher, September 15, 1950, 
September 18, 1952, September 16, 
1955, April 6, 195 1. 

12. Thresher, May 15, 1953, May 

10, 1957; Faculty Minutes, October 
30, 195 3- 

13. Board Minutes, June 15, 1953, 
June 24, 1953; Houston to Croneis, 
June 18, 1953, Presidents' Papers, 
Houston, Departments; George 
Holmes Richter, March 9, 1978; Wil- 
liam H. Masterson, October 11, 

14. Faculty Minutes, May 30, 

195 3; Michael V. McEnany, Septem- 
ber I, 1977. 

15. Faculty Minutes, April 21, 

16. Board Minutes, May 7, 1958, 
July 30, 1958; Thresher, September 

11, 1958; Houston Post, February 12, 
1960; Houston Chronicle, February 

12, i960. 

17. Houston Post, December 21, 
195 1; Houston Chronicle. January 4, 
195 1, October 9, 1954; William H. 
Masterson to T M. Greene, April 21, 
1954, Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records; Board Minutes, Sep- 
tember 29, 1954. 

18. Board Minutes, June 23, 1959; 
Thresher. September 19, 1959; Hous- 
ton Chronicle. July 26, 1959; Hous- 
ton to Griffis, May 8, 1959, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Pitzer, On Campus, 



1961-1963; Faculty Minutes, Octo- 
ber 19, 1959. 

ig. Announcements. 19^6, p. 92; 
Houston Post. luly is, 19s i, April 
13, 1956, February 10, i9S7; Houston 
Chronicle, October 14, 1951, Decem- 
ber 12, 1954, August 28, 195s, Sep- 
tember 25, I9S6, February 19, I9S7, 
April 4, 1958, |une 3, 1960; Thresher. 
February 27, 1953; Tom Bonner, ver- 
tical file, WRC; Biology Building, 
vertical file, WRC; Geology Building, 
vertical file, WRC. 

20. Board Minutes, March 2s, 

1953, May 5, 1954, May 26, 19S4, 
December is, i949, lunc 29, 19s S, 
July 26, I9SS; Nielsen and McBride 
to Houston, (August I9S5'1' Presi- 
dents' Papers, Houston, Office Rec- 
ords; Press release, ibid.; Minutes ot 
meeting of an informal committee 
on the Student Religious Center, July 
13, 1955, ibid.; Houston Post. No- 
vember I, 1955. 

21. Board Minutes, (une 29, 1955, 
September 28, 1955; McBride to Por- 
ter Butts, July 27, 1954, November 8, 

19 54, Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records; Minutes of informal 
committee on Student Religious 
Center, July 13, 19s S, ibid.; Houston 
Post. November i, 1955, October 26, 
1958, February 29, 1956; Thresher. 
November 4, 19SS; Houston Chroni- 
cle. November 4, 1955, October 26, 

22. Thresher. November 6, 1963. 

23. Houston Chronicle. September 
I, 1957; Nancy Moore Eubank, Feb- 
ruary 22, 1978; George R. Brown, 
July 14, 1977. 

24. Guy T. McBride, October 24, 
1977; Thresher. May 28, 1962; Com- 
mittee on Student Housing Minutes, 
November 22, 19S4, Committee on 
Student Housing, vertical file, WRC; 
Committee on Student Housing, 
"New Dimensions in Student Life, 
Reports of the Committee on Stu- 
dent Housing," September i, 1956, 
bound volume of reports in Fondren 

Library, Rice University, Houston, 
Texas, 1-5. The Committee on Stu- 
dent Housing will be cited hereafter 
as CSH. 

2s. Guy T McBride, October 24, 
1977; "New Dimensions," s-<'i- 

26. Board Minutes, May 27, 19s 3, 
June 24, 19s 3; Guy T. McBride, Oc- 
tober 24, 1977; "New Dimensions," 

27. The Book of the Opening. 
i: 164-70. 

28. Board Minutes, September 29, 
1954, August 25, 1954. 

29. "New Dimensions," 17-22; 
Faculty Minutes, October 26, 1954; 
Guy T McBride, October 24, 1977; 
Clara Mohr Kotch, February 10, 
1978; Board Minutes, March 30, 
19s S; Houston to A. Whitney Gris- 
wold, February 15, 19s S, Presidents' 
Papers, Houston, Office Records; 
Houston to L. A. DuBridge, February 
IS, 1955, ibid. 

30. Report to the faculty by the 
CSH, Faculty Minutes, April 21, 


31. CSH Minutes, November 22, 
I9S4, November 29, 1954; "New Di- 
mensions," 22-25; Faculty Minutes, 
April 21, 1955. 

32. "New Dimensions," 32; Paula 
Meredith Mosle, September 7, 1978. 

33. "New Dimensions," 26-27; 
Faculty Minutes, April 21, 1955; 
CSH Minutes, February 7, 1955, 
April I, 1955. 

34. "New Dimensions," 14, 27-28, 
5 3-55- 

35. "New Dimensions," 14, 27-28, 

36. "New Dimensions," 13-14, 
24-25, 45-48; CSH Minutes, No- 
vember 29, 1954, January 10, 1955, 
January 17, 1955. 

37. "New Dimensions," 37-41. 

38. "New Dimensions," 67-76. 

39. After Mrs. Dunn retired, Daisy 
Coe became housemother along with 
Mrs. Morrow. Paula Meredith Mosle, 
September 7, 1978; Dowden and 

McBride to Houston, May 2, 1951, 
Presidents' Papers, Houston, Office 
Records; Meredith to Houston, May 
22, 1957, ibid.; Houston Chronicle. 
July 12, 1948, May 20, 195 1; Board 
Minutes, March 28, 1956, July 25, 
1956; Thresher. September 28, 1951; 
Clara Mohr Kotch, February 10, 

40. "New Dimensions," 28-33; 
CSH Minutes, February 9, 1955, 
April I, 1955, May 6, 1955, May 16, 
19s 5; Paula Meredith Mosle, Septem- 
ber 7, 1978; Board Minutes, June 29, 

1 9 S 5 . 

41. Board Minutes, November 30, 
1955, June 27, I95''''/ July 25, 1956; 
Houston Chronicle. November 17, 
1955; CSH Minutes, February 9, 
195 5; McBride to Houston, February 
15, 195s, Presidents' Papers, Hous- 
ton, Office Records; Will Rice Col- 
lege, vertical file, WRC. 

42. Calvin M. Class, January 20, 
1978; James Street Fulton, September 
30, 1977; William H. Masterson, Oc- 
tober II, 1977; Paula Meredith Mo- 
sle, September 7, 1978; Guy T. 
McBride, October 24, 1977- 

43. Thresher, March 13, 196^,. 

44. Paula Meredith Mosle, Septem- 
ber 7, 1978; William H. Masterson, 
October 11, 1977; James Street 
Fulton, September 30, 1977; James R. 
Sims, January 18, 1978; Calvin M. 
Class, January 20, 1978; Respon- 
sibilities and Interrelations of 

the College Masters, the Dean of 
Women, and the Dean of Students, 
April II, 1963, Presidents' Papers, 
Pitzcr, On Campus, 1961-1963; 
Thresher. March 13, 1963. 

45. Thresher. April 21, 1961. 

46. Thresher. April 21, i9''ii, 
March 13, 1963; Statement on 
Trends in the Colleges from Higgin- 
botham, January 24, 1962, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Pitzer, On Campus, 

1 961 -1963; Paul Burka, September 
12, 1978; James B. Giles, September 
6, 1978; James Street Fulton, Scptem- 



ber 30, 1977- 

47. William H. Masterson, October 
II, 1977; James Street Fulton, Sep- 
tember 30, 1977; Calvin M. Class, 
January 20, 1978; James R. Sims, Jan- 
uary 18, 1978; Thresher, April 21, 
1961, March 13, 1963. 

48. Houston Post. October 10, 
1956; Thresher, October 8, 1952, 
March 4, 1955, October 7, 1955, Oc- 
tober 14, 1955, February 24, 1956, 
February 17, 1956, October 12, 1956, 
November 9, 1956, February 8, 1957, 
October 25, 1957, February 22, 1957; 
Houston Chronicle, October 10, 
1956, November 4, 1956; McBride to 
Jack Holland, February 5, 1957, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Houston, Office Rec- 
ords; McBride to Houston, October 
ID, 1957, ibid.; Faculty Minutes, May 
10, 1957; Paula Meredith Mosle, Sep- 
tember 7, 1978; Nancy Moore Eu- 
bank, February 22, 1978; Jacquelin 
Collins, September 9, 1978. 

49. Thresher, October 31, 1962, 
December 3, 1964; Houston Chroni- 
cle, October 14, 1959; "New Dimen- 
sions," 48. 

50. Mike V. McEnany to Houston, 
May 28, 1953, Presidents' Papers, 
Houston, Office Records; Report to 
the Executive Committee from the 
Committee of Educational Inquiry, 
May 1953, ibid.; Faculty Minutes, 
March 30, 1953. 

51. Oral communication, Mrs. 
Douglas Dunlap, Admissions Office, 
Rice University; Annual Report to 
the President, Registrar's Office. 

52. Report of the Committee on 
the Freshman Course, October 1953, 
with the papers given to the Rice 
Historical Commission by J. D. 
Thomas. The commission then gave 
the papers to the WRC. McCann to 
Houston, March 29, 1955, Presidents' 
Papers, Houston, Office Records; 
Statement of revised admission re- 
quirements and procedures, 19s S- 
1956, ibid.; Faculty Minutes, October 
26, 1954, May 10, 1957, June 2, 1955; 

oral communication, Mrs. Douglas 
Dunlap; Annual Reports to the Presi- 
dent, Registrar's Office. The Com- 
mittee on the Freshman Course was 
abolished in 1955, and a new com- 
mittee was appointed to study the 
problem of providing better oppor- 
tunities for contact between students 
and faculty. 

53. Faculty Minutes, April 21, 
195s, February 17, 1956, May 10, 
1957, May 29, 1958; Thresher, May 
S, 1961. 

54. Proposals for the Humanities 
Division, in Masterson to Houston, 
September 23, 1959, Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Pitzer, On Campus, 196 1- 1963. 

55. Louise Johnson, February 20, 

56. James B. Giles, September 6, 
1978; Frank E. Vandiver, April 3, 
1978, April 25, 1978; George H. 
Richter, July 5, i977, March 9, 1978; 
Paula Meredith Mosle, September 7, 
1978; Paul Burka, September 12, 
1978; and informal conversations 
with Hugh Rice Kelly Molly Kelly 
Myra Bahme, Patricia Teed, Mary Fae 
McKay, Mary Margaret Hill, Kather- 
ine Drew, S. W. Higginbotham, Car- 
oline Reynolds, and Sam Stewart. 

57. Paul Burka, September 12, 
1978; James B. Giles, September 6, 
1978; Frank E. Vandiver, April 3, 
1978, April 25, 1978; Calvin Class, 
January 20, 1978; Jacquelin Collins, 
September 9, 1978; Paula Meredith 
Mosle, September 7, 1978; and infor- 
mal conversations with those cited 
in note 56. 

58. Some remember a cartoon from 
the period that showed a student, 
dripping blood, walking down the 
sidewalk in front of the Physics 
Building, with an enormous sword of 
the old Roman style stuck in his 
back. Two other students are watch- 
ing, and one says to the other, "I 
think he just asked to change a 
course." James B. Giles, September 6, 





James B. Giles, September 6, 
Paul Burka, September 12, 
Jacquelin Collins, September 9, 

George H. Richter, March 9, 

Calvin M. Class, January 20, 
Frank E. Vandiver, April 3, 
April 25, 1978; James B. Giles, 
mber 6, 1978. 
Kenneth S. Pitzer, October 26, 


63. Report of the Committee on 
the Freshman Course, October 1953, 
WRC; Report to the Executive 
Committee from the Committee of 
Educational Inquiry, May 1953; Pres- 
idents' Papers, Houston, Office Rec- 
ords; Mike V. McEnany to Houston, 
May 28, 1953, ibid.; Kenneth S. 
Pitzer, October 26, 1977; James B. 
Giles, September 6, 1978; Jacquelin 
Collins, September 9, 1978; Collins 
to Meiners, December 14, 1978, in 
possession of the commission. 

64. Paul Burka, September 12, 
1978; Jacquelin Collins, September 9, 
1978; and informal conversations 
with Myra Bahme, Caroline Rey- 
nolds, Sam Stewart, and Hugh Rice 

65. Paul Burka, September 12, 

66. Jacquelin Collins, September 9, 
1978; James B. Giles, September 6, 
1978; George H. Richter, July 5, 
1977, March 9, 1978; and informal 
conversations with S. W. Higgin- 
botham, William H. Masterson, 
Hugh Rice Kelly, Jacquelin Collins, 
and Frank E. Vandiver. 

67. Paul Burka, September 12, 
1978; George H. Richter, March 9, 
1978; Paula Meredith Mosle, Septem- 
ber 7, 1978; and informal conversa- 
tions with Myra Bahme, Frank 
Vandiver, Hugh Rice Kelly, Jacquelin 
Collins, Patricia Teed, and Mary Fae 

68. Other sources for this section 
are Finis E. Cowan, March 16, 1978; 



William P. Hobby, |uly 28, ly??; 
Nancy Moore Eubank, February 22, 
1978; Chalmers M. Hudspeth, |uly 
19, 1978; James Street Fulton, Sep- 
tember 30, 1977; James R. Sims, Jan- 
uary 18, 1978; John E. Parish, 
September 28, 1977; Houston to W. 

E. Allen, February i, 1955, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Houston, Offiee 

69. Houston Chronicle. October 
28, 1950, November 9, 1950; January 
II, 1954, November 10, 1950, April 
27, 1951, May 14, 1955, May 22, 
1953, November 19, 1954; Thresher. 
November 10, 1950, February 23, 
1951, April 12, 1957, May 3, 1957, 
December 11, 1959; Houston Post, 
May 14, 1955, November 19, 195 s, 
December 21, 1955; Jacquelin Col- 
lins, September 9, 1978; Gertrude 
Stem, vertical file, WRC; Houston to 

F. Talbott Wilson, September 4, 1953, 
Presidents' Papers, Houston, Office 
Records; Report of the Food Commit- 
tee, 1950- 19s I, Presidents' Papers, 
Pitzer, On Campus, 1 961- 1963. The 
bust of Gertrude Stein was the work 
of sculptor Jacques Lipchitz. 

70. Jess Neely, October 10, 1977. 

71. Jess Neely, October 10, 1977; 
Football '77; Southwest Conference 
Roster and Record Book, pp. 61-69, 
157-204; Basketball '78: The 1918 
Southwest Conference Roster and 
Record Book, pp. 24-29, 82-88; 
Southwest Conference 1978 Spring 
Sports Media Guide, pp. 24-36, 


Chapter 9 .^L'^ 

1. Board Minutes, September 25, 
1957; George Holmes Richter, July 5, 
1977; Guy T. McBndc, October 24, 

2. Board Minutes, December 16, 
1959, March 30, i960, June 29, 196O; 
Sallyport 16 (January i960); Thresher. 
January 16, i960, February 26, i960, 

April 6, i960, April 9, 196O; Houston 
to Rice Associates, February 2, i960, 
Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On Cam- 
pus, 1961-1963; Houston Chronicle. 
January 9, i960, January 10, i960, 
April 7, i960, April 8, i960, April 9, 
1960; Houston Post, January 10, 
i960, January 18, 196O; H. Malcolm 
Lovett, June 27, 1977. 

3. Board Minutes, September 19, 
i960, January 25, 1961; Houston to 
Faculty, July 27, i960. Presidents' 
Papers, Pitzer, On Campus, 1961- 
1963; Faculty Minutes, lanuary 30, 
1961, February 20, 1961; Thresher, 
September 10, i960, October 28, 
i960, September 23, i960. 

4. Board Minutes, April 26, 1961, 
May 31, 1 96 1; Mrs. J. Newton Ray- 
zor, February 8, 1978; Kenneth S. Pit- 
zer, vertical file, WRC. 

5. Board Minutes, October 2, 1952, 
September 28, i960, September 27, 

1961, March 28, 1962; Thresher. Oc- 
tober 3, 1 96 1; Houston Post. April 
17, 196O; Masterson to Croneis, June 
7, 1961, Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, 
On Campus, 1961-1963. 

6. Faculty Minutes, September 28, 
1 96 1; Pitzer to J. Wallace Sterling, 
August 31, 1962, Presidents' Papers, 
Pitzer, On Campus, 196 1- 1963; 
"Call to the Semifrontier," Time. No- 
vember 24, 1961, clipping in Presi- 
dents' Papers, Pitzer, On Campus, 
1961-1963; "The Third President 
Looks at Rice," Rice Alumni Maga- 
zine I (March 1963), 5 -9; Houston 
Chronicle. July 6, 1961; Thresher. 
September 15, 1961. 

7. Pitzer to Board, January 25, 

1962, Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On 
Campus, 1961-1963; Report of the 
Academic Planning Committee to 
the President, December 8, 1961, 
ibid.; Houston Chronicle, December 
21, 1 96 1, December 22, 1961, clip- 
pings in Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, 
On Campus, 1961-1963. 

8. Houston Chronicle. February 4, 
i960, February 21, i960, April 4, 

i960. May IS, i960, July 24, i960, 
January 3, 1961, March 9, 1961, April 

21, 1961, August 25, 1961, Septem- 
ber 19, 1 96 1, September 24, 1961, 
December 14, 1961, December 21, 

1961, December 27, 1961, January 7, 

1962, January 18, 1962, March 23, 
1962, April 4, 1962, April 8, 1962, 
April 12, 1962, May 29, 1962, June 

22, 1962, July 19, 1962, August 23, 
1962, October 8, 1962; Houston Post, 
June 19, 1962; Houston Post, n.d., 
clipping in Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, 
On Campus, 1961-1963; Board Min- 
utes, August 23, 1961, October 25, 

1 96 1; Thresher. September 19, 1962. 

9. Houston Chronicle, February 10, 

1961, March ig, 1961, November 19, 
1961; Kenneth S. Pitzer, October 26, 
1977; Report of joint meeting of 
members of the faculty and of the 
Board of Governors, November i s, 
i960. Presidents' Papers, Houston, 
Office Records; Board Minutes, May 

23, 1962, September 27, 1961. 

10. Board Minutes, January 31, 

1962, February 28, 1962, April 25, 
1962, September 27, 1961; Chancel- 
lor Croneis thought that S20 million 
was much too small a sum. He sug- 
gested to Rayzor that at least 875 
million was needed and that it would 
only be the beginning. The S20 mil- 
lion would be helpful, but he thought 
the board should be told "quite 
plainly" that even S7S million would 
prove to be entirely inadequate. Cro- 
neis to Rayzor, February 27, 1962, 
Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On Cam- 
pus, 1 96 1 -1963. 

11. Board Minutes, September 27, 
1961, May 23, 1962, July 25, 1962, 
September 26, 1962, February 27, 
1963; Faculty Minutes, June i, 1962; 
H. Malcolm Lovett, June 27, 1977, 
March 29, 1978; Kenneth S. Pitzer, 
October 26, 1978; Thresher. February 
27, 1963, February 12, 1964, February 
13, 1964, February 19, 1964, February 
26, 1964, March 11, 1964; Houston 
Post, February 22, 1963; S33 Million 



Campaign Newsletter, WRC. 

12. Kenneth S. Pitzer, October 26, 
1978; Notes written in Pitzer's hand, 
n.d., in Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On 
Campus, 1961-1963; "The Aca- 
demic Planning Committee: Purpose 
and Program," n.d., but stamped 
March 6, 1963, ibid.; Academic Plan- 
ning Committee Minutes, January 4, 
1963, February 11, 1963, April 29, 
1963, May 7, 1963, ibid.; Progress Re- 
port of Academic Planning Commit- 
tee, June 4, 1963, ibid.; Self-Study of 
William Marsh Rice University. 
October i, 1964, pp. xii-xx; Faculty 
Minutes, March 12, 1963. 

13. Self-Study, pp. 4-6; Thresher, 
October 15, 1964. The General and 
Educational Budget for 1978 
amounted to $25 million. 

14. Self -Study, pp. 9-11; Faculty 
Minutes, September 28, 1961; Memo 
on role of the Dean of Students, n.d.. 
Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On Cam- 
pus, 1961-1963; Policy for Masters, 
Dean of Women, Dean of Students, 
April II, 1963, ibid.; Kenneth S. 
Pitzer, October 26, 1978; Frank E. 
Vandiver, April 3, 1978; Report of 
Academic Development Committee, 
December 8, 1961, Presidents' Pa- 
pers, Pitzer, On Campus, 1961-1963. 

15. Faculty Minutes, April 16, 
1962; Thresher. May 12, 1961, Sep- 
tember 15, 1961, April 13, 1962. 

16. Board Minutes, lanuary 31, 
1962, March 28, 1962; Donald Mac- 
kenzie to Masterson, May i, 1961, 
Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On Cam- 
pus, 1961-1963; Pitzer to Depart- 
ment Chairmen, March 9, 1962, 
ibid.; Report of Academic Develop- 
ment Committee, December 8, 1961, 
ibid.; Kenneth S. Pitzer, October 26, 
1978; Frank E. Vandiver, April 3, 

17. Board Minutes, November 30, 
ig6i. May 29, 1963; Thresher, Febru- 
ary ID, 1961. 

18. Board Minutes, February 24, 
1960; Thresher, 

February 26, i960, December 16, 
1 96 1; Houston Post, February 26, 
1960; Houston Chronicle, February 
26, i960, December 10, 1961. 

19. Announcements. 1958, pp. 
69-81; 1961, pp. 37-46; 1962, 
pp. 36-46; Faculty Minutes, Janu- 
ary 30, 1961, February 20, 1961, 
April 24, 1 96 1; Self-Study, pp. 
70-74; Thresher. February 26, i960, 
April 29, i960, September 16, i960, 
April 28, 1 96 1; Houston Chronicle. 
July 24, i960, September 11, i960, 
February 24, 1961, April i, 1962; 
Notes and minutes on meeting of di- 
vision of the humanities, March 29, 
i960, Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On 
Campus, 1961-1963; Croneis to 
Mackenzie, February 4, 1961, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Houston, Depart- 
ments; Jess Neely, October 10, 1977; 
Hubert E. Bray, June 18, 1976, Sep- 
tember 30, 1976. 

20. James B. Giles, September 6, 
1978; Annoimcements, 1961, p. 33; 
Admissions policy, n.d.. Presidents' 
Papers, Pitzer, On Campus, 1961- 
1963; Thresher, March 4, i960. May 
II, 1962, September 19, 1962; Hous- 
ton Chronicle, September 6, i960. 

21. James B. Giles, September 6, 
1978; Kenneth S. Pitzer, October 26, 
1977; Admissions policy, n.d.. Presi- 
dents' Papers, Pitzer, On Campus, 
1961 -1963. 

22. "Distribution of Grades in Se- 
lected Institutions, Spring 1961," 
Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On Cam- 
pus, 1961-1963. 

23. Mackenzie to Pitzer, February 
25, 1963, Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, 
On Campus, 1961-1963. 

24. Thresher, May 5, 1961, May 12, 
1 96 1, February 6, 1963, February 13, 
1963, March 13, 1963, September 24, 
1964; "Distribution of Grades in Se- 
lected Institutions, Spring 1961," 
ibid.; Subcommittee on Program of 
Undergraduate Instruction to Aca- 
demic Planning Committee, n.d., 
ibid.; Committee on Examinations 

and Standing to Pitzer, March 5, 
1963, in Minutes of the Committee 
on Examinations and Standing; Self- 
Study, pp. 48-49, 76-78; James B. 
Giles, September 6, 1978; Paul 
Burka, September 12, 1978. 

25. Joint Meeting of Members of 
the Faculty and of the Board of Gov- 
ernors, November 15, i960, Presi- 
dents' Papers, Houston, Office 
Records; Subcommittee on Program 
of Undergraduate Instruction to Aca- 
demic Planning Committee, n.d.. 
Presidents' Papers, Pitzer, On Cam- 
pus, 1 96 1 -1963; Academic Planning 
Committee Minutes, April 29, 1963, 
May 7, 1963, ibid.; Thresher, Septem- 
ber 19, 1962, March 13, 1963, Febru- 
ary 13, 1963, September 18, 1963, 
September 24, 1964, October i, 1964; 
Houston Post, May 12, 1963; Self- 
Study, pp. 48-49. 

26. Thresher, November 10, 1961, 
September 19, 1962, October 24, 
1962, November 28, 1962, October 8, 
1964; Houston Post, October 22, 
i960, April 29, 1961, September 6, 
1962, December 6, 1962; Houston 
Chronicle, September 8, i960, Sep- 
tember 25, i960. May 10, 1961, Sep- 
tember 7, 1962, December 6, 1962, 
December 13, 1962; Chalmers 
Hudspeth, July 19, 197B. 

Chapter 10 ^ta<^^^ 

1. The Inauguration of Kenneth 
Sanborn Pitzer and Semicentennial 
Ceremonies at William Marsh Rice 
University, October 10-13, 1962 
(Houston: Rice University, 1963), pp. 

2. Semicentennial, vertical file, 
WRC; Inauguration of Pitzer, pas- 
sim; Man, Science, Learning, and 
Education, the Semicentennial Lec- 
tures at Rice University (Houston: 
Rice University, 1963I, passim. 



Rice University, Houston, Texas 
Comptroller's Office, Allen Center 

Budget file 
Registrar's Office, Lovett Hall 

Report to the President from the 

Registrar, 19 12- 1964 
Treasurer's Office, Allen Center 

Office Correspondence 

Minutes of the Board of Trustees 
Undergraduate Dean's Office, 
Lovett Hall 

Minutes of the Committee on 

Examinations and Standing, 

1946- 1964 
Woodson Research Center, 
Fondren Library 

Charter of the Wilham M. Rice 

Institute for the Advancement 

of Literature, Science and Art, 

Houston, Texas [1891) 
Committee on the Freshman 
Course file 

Dean of Students, Hugh S. 
Cameron file 

Letters Addressed to Secretary 
E. Raphael 

Presidents' Papers: Edgar Odell 

Presidents' Papers: William 
Vermillion Houston 
Presidents' Papers: Kenneth 
Sanborn Pitzer 
Photographic file 
Vertical file 
$33 Million Campaign 

Rice Institute Engineering Show 

William Ward Watkin Papers 
McCants, John T "Some 
Information Concerning the 
Rice Institute" 

Wilson, Mrs. Harold. "Rambling 
Reminiscences of Early Days at 
Rice by a Septuagenarian" 
Bulbrook, Harry Marshall. 
"Odyssey of a Freshman — 19 12" 

Books and Journal Articles 

Baker, James A., Ir. "Reminiscences 
of the Founder." Rice Institute 
Pamphlet 18, no. 3 (July 1931): 

Basketball '78: The 1978 Southwest 
Conference Roster and Record 
Book, N.p.: Southwest Conference, 

The Book of the Opening of the Rice 
Institute. 3 vols. Houston: Rice 
Institute, 191 5. 

Butler, Nicholas Murray. Across the 
Busy Years: Recollections and 
Reflections. 2 vols. New York: 
C. Scribner's Sons, 1939, 1940. 

Coon, Horace. Columbia: Colossus 
on the Hudson. New York: E. P. 
Dutton & Co., Inc., 1947. 

Cram, Ralph Adams. My Life in 
Architecture. Boston: Little, Brown 
& Co., 1936. 

Cramer, Clarence H. Case Western 
Reserve: A History of the 
University, 1826-1976. Boston: 
Little, Brown & Co., 1976. 

Davies, Debbie. "Rice has been 
trading knocks with the 

distinguished Texas A&M 
University for 63 years and all 
we've got to show for it are a few 
bruises — and many memories. 
That's no joke." Sallyport 32, no. 2 
(November is, 1976): 10- 11. 

Davis, Ellis A. and Grobe, Edwin H., 
comps. and eds. The New 
Encyclopedia of Texas. Dallas: 
Texas Development Bureau, n.d. 
|ca. 1926]. 

Earnest, Ernest. Academic 
Procession: An Informal History of 
the American College, 1636 to 
I9';3. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill 
Co., Inc., 1953. 

Elliott, Orrin Leslie. Stanford 
University: The First Twenty-five 
Years. Stanford, Ca.: Stanford 
University Press, 1937. 

Embree, Elisha D. and Eaton, 
Thomas B. The Flying Owls: Rice 
Institute from the Air N.p., 1921. 
Copy in WRC. 

Football '77; Southwest Conference 
Roster and Record Book. N.p.: 
Southwest Conference, 1977. 

General Announcements. Houston: 
Rice Institute (University), 

Hawkins, Hugh. Pioneer: A History 
of the fohns Hopkins University, 
1874-1889. Ithaca, N. Y.: Cornell 
University Press, i960. 

Houston, William V. "Edgar Odell 
Lovett." Yearbook of the American 
Philosophical Society (1957): 

Huxley, Julian. Memories. 2 vols. 
London: George Allen & Unwin, 



Publishers, Ltd., 1970, 197V 
. "Texas and 

Academe." CornhiU Magazine 

I iS duly I9i8):53-6s. 
lourdain, Philip E. B. "A New 

American University." Rice 

Institute Pamphlet 5 (October 

Kelley Brooks M. Yale: A History. 

New Haven, Conn.: Yale 

University Press, 1974. 
Lear, Floyd S. "History and the 

Humanities in Our Earlier Years." 

Flyleaf is, no. i (October 

1964:2-17; IS, no. 2 ilanuary 

Lovett, Edgar O. "Some Relations 

of the University." Rice Institute 

Pamphlet s (October 1918I: 

. "Historical Sketch 

of Rice Institute, A Gift to Texas 

Houston Post Annual Industrial 

Number, November f, 1920. 
Morison, Samuel Eliot, ed. The 

Development of Harvard 

University Since the Inauguration 

of President Eliot. 1869-1929. 

Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard 

University Press, 1950. 
Muir, Andrew F. "Rice's Future 

Mapped in Early 1900s." Houston 

Post. October 7, 1962. 
. William Marsh Rice 

and His Institute. Edited by Sylvia 

Stallings Morris. Rice Universitv 

Studies s8, no. 2 (Spring 1972 1. 

Reprint. Houston: Rice University, 

Pierson, George Wilson. Yale 

College: An Educational History. 

1871-1921. New Haven, Conn.: 

Yale University Press, 19s 2. 
. Yale: The 

University College. 1921-19}-'. 

New Haven, Conn.: Yale 

University Press, 1955. 
Ramsay, William. "The Functions 

ot a University." Rice Institute 

Pamphlet s (October 191S): 

The Rice Institute. N.p.: DeVinne 

Press, n.d. Known as the DeVinne 

Pamphlet. Copy in WRC. 
Rudolph, Frederick. The American 

College and University: A History. 

New York: Alfred A. Knopt, Inc., 

Schmidt, George P. The Liberal Arts 

College: A Chapter in American 

Cultural History. New Brunswick, 

N. I.: Rutgers University Press, 

Self-Studv of William .Marsh Rice 

University. Houston: Rice 

University, 1964. 
Southwest Conference 1978 Spring 

Sports Media Guide. N.p.: 

Southwest Conference, 1978. 
Thwing, Charles Franklin. The 

American Colleges and 

Universities in the Great War. 

1914-1919: A History. New York: 

The Macmillan Company, 1920. 
Veysey, Laurence R. The Emergence 

of the American Universitv. 

Chicago: University of Chicago 

Press, 1965. 
Watkin, William Ward. 

"Architectural Development of 

the William M. Rice Institute, 

Houston, Texas." Southern 

Architectural Review i (November 

Wertenbaker, Thomas Jefferson. 

Princeton. 1^46-1896. Princeton, 

N. I.: Princeton University Press, 



Houston Chronicle 
Houston Post (also known as 

Houston Daily Post and Houston 

Post Dispatch] 
Houston Press 


Allen, Herbert, September 27, 1977 
Batier, Helen, August 10, 1976 
Battista, loseph L., March 8, 1978 
Bourgeois, Andre, November 28, 

Bray, Gertrude, January 22, 1976 
Bray, Hubert E., fune 18, 1976, 

September 30, 1976 
Brown, George R., July 14, 1977 
Bulbrook, Harry M., October 28, 

Burka, Paul, September 12, 1978 
Camden, Carroll, September 20, 

Chapman, Allen, September 30, 1977 
Class, Calvin M., January 20, 1978 
Collins, Jacquclin, September 9, 1978 
Cowan, Finis E., March 16, 1978 
Davis, Joe W, February 21, 1978 
Dwyer, C. A., luly 26, 1977 
Eikenberg, C. Virgil, February 9, 1978 
Emison, Sam and Mary Frances, 

September 21, 1977 
Erfurth, August, September 20, 1977 
Eubank, Nancy Moore, February 22, 

Filson, Martha, February 19, 1976 
Fuermann, George, August s, 1977 
Fulton, James Street, September 30, 

Gallegley, Joseph I.. October 26, 1976 
Giles, lames B., September 6, 1978 
Hartsook, Arthur J., luly 21, 1977 
Heaps, Belle, February 17, 1978 
Hobby William P., July 28, 1977 
Hudspeth, Chalnrers, July 19, 1978 
lameson, Florence McAllister, 

February 3, 1978 
Johnson, Gaylord and Louise, 

February 20, 1978, March 27, 1978 
Johnson, Marguerite, August s, 1977 
Kirkland, William A., July 19, 1977 
Kotch, Clara Margaret Mohr, 

February 10, 1978 
Lane, Sarah, October 20, 1975, 

luly I, 1977 
Lankford, Raymond L.. lanuary 30, 




Lovett, H. Malcolm, May 19, 1976, 

June 27, 1977, March 29, 1978, July 

27, 1981 
McBride, Guy T., October 24, 1977 
McEnany Michael V., September i, 

Masterson, William H., October 11, 

Morehead, James C, April 6, 1978 
Mosle, Paula Meredith, September 7, 

Nealon, Clark, February 2, 1978 
Neely Jess C, October 10, 1977 
Nunn, Stayton, April 5, 1978 
Parish, John, September 28, 1977 

Pitzer, Kenneth Sanborn, October 26, 

Rayzor, Eugenia, February 8, 1978 
Red, Hattie Lei, January 23, 1976, 

June 28, 1977 
Reynolds, Walter M., September 19, 

Richtcr, G. Holmes, July 5, i977, 

March 9, 1978 
Sanders, Isaac, July 27, 1976 
Shelton, Fred V., September 29, 1977 
Shimek, Joe and Evelyn, September 

22, 1977 
Sims, James R., January 18, 1978 
Stancliff, Fred, September 28, 1977 

Teague, James U., June 29, 1977 
Thomas, J. D., July 13, 1977 
Tillett, Henry A., December 23, 1976 
Vandiver, Frank E., April 3, 1978, 

April 25, 1978 
Waples, Margaret A., February 24, 

Whitmore, William, January 19, 1978 


AAUP. See American Association of 

University Professors 
Abercrombic Engineering Laboratory, 

Abercrombie, James S,, 143 
Academic calendar, 102, 1^,4, 13s, 

Academic freedom, resolution on, 87 
Accelerator, 173 
Accounting system, 171 
Adams, |ohn A. S., 172 
Administration, 60, 79, 82, 83, 89, 

94, 106, 115, 119, 122, 134, 140, 

170-73, 183, 203, 209 
Administration Building, 21, 29-36, 
65, 66, 88, 99, 144 

cornerstone of, 42-43 
Admissions, 140, 203 

director of, 161, 171, 206 

procedures for, 148, 206-7 

racial discrimination in, 201 

requirements for, 48, 63, 89, 92, 
148-49, 189 
Adviser to women, 50, 122, 163, 171, 

181, 182, 203 
Akers, William W., 149 
Albaugh, Reuben, 106 
Alborn, Ray, 195 
Alexander, lay, 80 
All- American players, 130, 167 
All-Conference players, 130, 16s, i9S 
Allen, Herbert, 169, 179 
Alpha Rho club, 1 15 
Altenburg, Edgar, 95, 96, 98, 108, 124 
Alumni, 136, 161, 197, 201 

magazine of, no 

See also Association of Rice 
Alumni; Sallyport 
American Association of University 

Professors, 204 

American Association of University 

Women, 1 1 7 
Amerman, A. E., 85 
Anderson, Clayton & Co., 108, 137, 

Anderson Hall, 153, 205 
Anderson, M. D., 1 5 3 

Foundation, 136, 137, 173 
Andrews, Forrest Lee, 106 
Angel, John, 125 
Announcements. General. 69, 72, 

115, 149, 161, 171, 206 
Arbuckle, Philip H., 45, S3, S7, 103 
Archi-Arts, 1 10 
Architect, selection of, 2S 

See also Cram, Goodhue and 
Ferguson; Cram and Ferguson; 
Harvin C. Moore; Pierce and 
Pierce; Staub and Rather; 
William Ward Watkin 
Architectural plan, 18 
Architectural Society, iio 

campus, 25 

degree in, 61 

department of, 171, 200 

program in, 4 s 

students in, 52, 62 

women in, 206 
Army, U. S., 70 
Arthur, Percy, 1 30 
Assistant to the president, position 

of, 171 
Associate professor, rank of, 149 
Association of Rice Alumni, 1 17, 

136, 138, 140, 144, 150, 162, 17s, 

2 1 s , 216 
Athletes, 93, 186, 206 
Athletic Association, 119, 121, is6 
Athletic Department, los, 120, 129 

Athletics, 45, 53, 56, 60, 80, 100, 
103, 129-32, 203 

business manager for, 105-6, 119, 

director of, 103, 106, 129 

expenditures for, 105 

recruiting in, 104- s 

See also names of individual 
athletic activities 
Atom bombardment machine, 125 
Atomic Energy Commission 

Fellowships, 170 
Auden, fohn H., 172 
Auditorium. See Hamman Hall 
Autry Court, i s6 
Autry House, 132, 169 
Autry, Mrs. James L., 108, 156 
Axson Club, 85 
Axson, Stockton, 57, 61, 64, 66, 70, 

82, 108, 123 
Aycock, Joseph W., 70-71 

BVD Co. See Company BVD 
Baccalaureate ceremonies, 66 
Bailey, Karl, 187 
Baker, Captain James A. See Baker, 

James Addison, Jr. 
Baker College, 183, 187 
Baker, James Addison, Jr., 3, 11, 

13-14, 19, 42, 60, 77, 81, 82, 8s, 
9S, 104, 108, 119, 120, 121, 13s, 
James A. Baker and Alice Graham 
Baker Bequest, 136 
Baly E. C. C, 99 
Band, 52, 128, 157, 203 

See also Marching Owl Band 
Banks Street, apartments on, 181 
Baseball, 56 
Basketball, 56, 103, 167, i9S 



Battista, Joseph L., 123 
Beer-Bikc Race, iSs, 209 
Bell, Calvin, 1 31 
Bell, H. Le Roy, 80 
Bender, Eugene L., 121 

Bender Bequest, i s 5 
Bequests, 121, 122, 136, 138, 143, 

150, 153, IS6, 1^18, 169, 193, 200, 

Billups, Val T., 201 
Biology building, 173 
Biology, program in, 46 
Biology students, organization of, 52 
Blaffer, Robert Lee, 119, 137, 193 
Blagg, loe, 1 3 1 
Blake, Mrs. Eugene C, 1 10 
Blake, Tommy 106 
Blanshard, Brand, 213 
Blayney, Thomas Lindsey, 4s, 63, ('■14, 

70, 96, 1 1 3 
"Blue Danube." Sec Harris Gully 
Bluebonnct Bowl, 194 
Board. See Board of Governors; Board 

of Trustees 
Board of Governors, 169, 173, 196, 

201, 204, 213, 218 
Board of Trustees, i, 3, 14, is, 16, 18, 

44, 60, 83, 84, 87, 88, 91, 94, 104, 

106, IIS, 119, 120, 134, 136, 137, 

138, 140-41, 142-43, 146, 153, 

168-69, 201, 216, 217 
Bonner Nuclear Lab, 123 
Bonner, Tom, 123, 173 
Bookstore, 17s 
Boone, Walter, 106 
Borel, Emilc, 3, 21s 
Bourgeois, Andre, 95 
Bracey, Claude, 106 
Brannon, Buster, 131, 167, 19s 
Bray Hubert, 31, S9, 122, 123, 160, 

204, 21 3 
British educational mission, 98 
Bronson, Bertrand H., 214 
Brotzen, Franz, 172 
Brown, George R., 137-3*^, i39, 141, 

153, 169, 178, 216 
Brown, Herman, 137 
Brown &. Root, 137, i s 3 
Browne, Charles L., 123 
Browne, Frederic W., 123 

Brownsville Terminal, i 37 
Bryan, Andrew, 172 
Brunson, Emmett, 106, 130 
Budget, 60, 65, 94, IDS, 119. 120, 

122, 140, 168, 198 
Bullard, Daniel R., 169 
Burchard, [ohn E., iso 
Burrell, [ohn, 19s 
Bursar, position of, 83, 171 
Business administration, course in, 


Cabinet, college, 181 
Cadet corps, 70 
women's, 73 
Cafeteria, 175 
Cain, Otta L., 71 
Caldwell, Robert G., _s8, 64, 83, 8s, 

92, 9S, 108, 114, IIS, I Ki, 121, 122 

Camden, Carroll, 123, 172 
Cameron, Hugh Scott, 146, 149, 162, 

Camp Funston, 70 
Campanile (smokestack), 36, s2, 187 
Campanile [yearbook], 52, 80, 121, 

183, 187 
Carswell, Frank, 131 
de Carvalho, Carlos Delgado, 12 s 
Case, Lynn M., 123 
Catalog, official. See 

Announcements. General 
Caudill, William, 204 
Cawthon, Pete, 103 
Cazamian, Louis, 99 
Chaille Rice Literary Society, 163 
Chancellor, position of, 198 
Chandler, Asa C, 9s, 96, 1 1 3 
Chapel, 169 

See also Rice Memorial Student 
Chapman, Alan ]., 149, 198 
Chapman, Richard, 19s 
Charter, 11, 15-16, 64, 92, 9s, 136, 

I so, 196, 200, 201 
Chatham, Lee, 128 
Cheerleaders, 112, 129, 162 
Chemistry Building, 88, 144, iso, 

Chillman, fames H., 204, 21 3 
Chitwood, Ben, 106 

Choral Club, S2 

Chrismann, Harry, 131 

Christopher, Bill, 167 

Class, Calvin, 172, 183 

Clayton, Will L., 108 

Cleveland, A. S., 47, 119, 1 36, 1 39, 

"Cloister courses," so 
Gloss, Bill, 167 

exclusive, prohibition against, 

jurisdiction of, 162 
See also names of individual 
Coaches. See names of individual 

sports or people: Salaries 
Coates, Thomas L., 71 
Coffee, lohn B., 201 
Coffman, Harry, 167 
Cohen, Agnes, 100 
Cohen, George S., 100 
Cohen House, 100, 141, 144 
Cohen, Robert I., 100 
Cohn, Arthur B., 120, 122 
Coleman, J. R, 80 
College Entrance Examination Board, 

tests of, 63, 161, 189, 206 
College Nights, 181, 186 
College system, 178-87, 193, 195, 
English, los, 178 
Colleges. See names of individual 

Colors, official, 37, 42 
Commencement, 66, 70, 9s, 154, 

135, 157, 197 
Board of Trustees (Governorsl 
Alumni and Student Activity, 

Building, 168 

Buildings and Grounds, 169 
Development, I70, 17S 
Faculty, Student, and Alumni, 

197, 200, 201 
Finance, 139, 168, 169 
Loans, 139 
Oil, 169 
Survey, 1 39 




Executive, 197 
Academic Development, 198, 

203, 204 
Academic Planning, 202, 207-8, 

Admissions, 89, 149, 189, 206 
Coordination of Freshmen, 160 
Course of Study and Schedules, 

Curriculum, 61, 64 
Educationallnquiry, 179, 188, 

189, 190 
Entrance Examinations, 64, 89, 

Examinations and Standing, 106, 

160, 161, 190, 208 
Executive, 146, 147, 171, i73, 

Faculty Council, 173 
Freshman Course, 160, 161, 189 
Graduate Instruction, 146, 149 
Honors Courses and Advanced 

Degrees, 106 
Library, 64, 65, 146 
Library Buildings, 150 
Military, 74, 75, 77, 82 
Non-Athletic Organizations, 64 
Outdoor Sports, 64, 103, 106, 

129, 130, 146, 171 
Recommendations, 64 
Student Activities, 146, 162 
Student Advisors, 64 
Student Housing, 17s, i79, 181, 
183, 184, 187 
Commons, 4, 36, 50, 59, 60, 112, 

144, 183 
Company BVD, 73 
Company B-D. See Company BVD 
Compton, Karl T., 144 
Conklin, Edwin Grant, 99 
Cooper Union, 16 
Cope, lackson, 172 
Cotton Bowl, 130, 132, 167, 194, I9S 
Cox, |ohn W., 200 
Craig, Hardin, Ir., 149, 161 
Cram, Ralph Adams, 25. See also 
Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; 

Cram and Ferguson 
Cram and Ferguson, 108, 150 
Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson, 45 
Crane, Charles I., 82 
Croneis, Carey, 171, 197, 198, 202, 

204, 213 
Crookston, Robert, 9 s 
Cullen, Hugh R., 137 
Cummins, Bill, 167 
Curie, Pierre, 42 
Curriculum, 48, 49, 61-62, 63, 102, 

124, 135, 140, 147-48, IS 9, 160, 

168, 188, 189, 193, 202, 204-s, 

Curtis, Bobby, 167 

Dallas Morning News, 197 
Darnell, Percy ]., 45, 46, 56- S7, 64, 

96, 124 
Darwin, Charles, 42 
Davies, loseph Ilott, 58, 123 
Davis, loe, 167 
Davis, Sam H., 172 
Davis, W. R., 137 
Dean, Alice Crowell, 65, 98, 150 

of the Institute (university), 83, 
lis, 12.2, 146, 173, 203 

of engineering, 173 

of graduate studies, 203 

of humanities, 173, 190 

of student activities, 163 

of students, 170, i8s, 186, 203 

of women, i8s, 203 
DcBremaecker, lean-Claude, 204 
Debts, prohibition against, 24, 137, 

Degrees, ii'7, 139 

advanced, 61, 63, 64,' 139, 149, 173. 

publication requirements for, 

bachelor's, 61, 66, 107, 134, 139, 
147, 148, 208 

engineering, 61, 62 

honorary, 100 

chairmen of, 171-72 

organization of, 60-61 
DePrato, Edwin, 103 

Depression. See Great Depression 

Dessler, Alexander, 204 

Devane, William C, 141 

Dewey, |ohn, 99 

Dial, Buddy, 195 

Dickey, lames, 172 

Diplomas, 66 

Discipline, responsibility for, 180, 

Dix, Charles H., 123 
Dodd, William E., 99 
Dodge, H. T, 80 
Doherty Robert P., 169 
Donoho, Paul, 204 
Dormitories. See Residence halls 
Dowden, Betty Rose, 163, 171, 181 
Dramatic Club, no, 128, 193 
Drew, Katherme Fischer, 149 
DuBndge, Lee A., 141, 144 
Dunaway lames K., 149 
Dunn, Margaret, 181 
DuPont Co., 170 
Dwyer, C. A., 122 
Dyer, Eddie, 103, 130 

EBLS. See Elizabeth Baldwin Literary 

East Hall, 36, 60, 180, 183 

athletes in, 105 

See also Baker College 
Easton, Thomas B., 88 
Education, higher, experiments in, 62 
Edwards, Edgar O., 202, 204 
Edwards, Lyford P., 84, 85, 125 
Edwards, William F., 45, 223nss 
Eisenhower, Dwight D., 193, 210, 

Elizabeth Baldwin Literary Society, 

Embree, Elisha D., 88 ^ ^^ 
Endowed chairs, i6g^^ '"' ' 
Endowment, I4,''l8, 19, 23-24, 60, 

88, 90, 95, 108, 119, 122, 136, 137, 

201, 203 
Engineering, 4s, 57, 92, 139 

students in, 62 
Engineering laboratory, 143. See also 

Ryon Laboratory 
Engineering quadrangle, plans for, 28 
Engineering Society, 52, no, 127, 

157-58, 164 



Engineers, naval, i u 

department ot, 149 

program in, 4s 
English Zero, 102 
Enrollment, 139 

increase in, 88, 198 

limiting, 91, 9^ 

total, IS9 
Entrance examinations. (Sv 90, 149, 

189. See aha College Entrance 

Examination Board 
Erturth, Augie, 167 
Eubank, Nancy Moore, 171 
Evans, Griffith C, 4s, S9, C-'i, (>4. '"''S, 

70, 96, 108, 123, 198 
Evolution, human, 83 
Ewing, William Maurice, 21s 


meetings of, 64, 146 

number of, 1^9, 140, 146, 16S 

organization of, 22, 61 

retirement plan for, 149 

salaries of. See salaries, faculty 
Faculty associates, 180, 185-8(1 
Faculty Chamber, 4, 36, 47 
Faculty club, 100. See aho Cohen 

Failures, student, 48, 62, los, iS9, 

160, 161, 191, 192, 203 
Falconer, Robert, 12 s 
Farish, S. P., 137 
Parish, Will S., 108, 137 
Fendley Francis T., 169 
Field House, 88, 102, 120, 12s, i sc^ 
Finances, 94-95, 120, 135, 139 
Fine arts, department of, 200 
Finger, Joe, 131 

"Fireside of Rice." See Autry House 
Fisher, Ronnie, 195 
Fisk, lames, 141 

Fleming, Lamar, Ir., 108, 143, 169 
Flying Owh. The. 88, 89, 90 
Fondren, Ella F., 143, 150 
Fondrcn Library, 28, 121, 153 
Fondren, Walter W., 108 
Food service, 59, 74, 112-13 See 

also Commons 
Football, 48, 53, 82, 88, 103, 106, 
129, 130, 142, 187, 194, 21'^ 

highest score in, s 3 
Ford Foundation, i7o, 202, 205 
Foust, Art, 195 
Fowler, Robert, 1 3 1 
Fox, Betty jean, 162 
Frankie, lohn, 195 
Fraternities, prohibition against, 51. 

115, 163, 180 
Frazier, loseph, 71, 73, 78 
French mission to universities, 98, 

Freshman class 

hazing of, 1 14-15 

preparation of, 63, 89 

size of, 89, 90, 148 
Freund, Max, 95 
Fulton, Farrell, 164 
Fulton, lames Street, 149, 183 
Fund raising, 169, 198, 200, 201, 218 

Galambos, Louis, 204 
Gallegly, loseph, 95 
Garden party, first, 66 
Garfield, L. E., 169 
Geddes, Auckland, 99 

endowed chair in, 1 69 

department of, 169, 171 

laboratory for, 173 
Giles, lames B., 149, 171, 206 
Girard College, 16 
Giroski, Paul, 167 
Glascock, Clyde C, 58 
Glennan, Keith, 215, 216 
Godwin Lectureship on Public 

Affairs, 99 
Goethe Verein, 52 
Golden Years, 216 
Goldston, Walter L., 169 
Golf team, 106 
Goode, William losiah, 129 
Grading system, 62 
Graduate Record Examination, 149 
Graduate school, 198 
Graduate studies, 25, 142, 146, 195, 

198, 208 
Graduation, requirements for, 1 34 
Graham, Ruth McLain, 216 
Graham, Shad, 216 
Graham Baker Student, 81 
Grand Ballroom, 175 

Grants, 170, 202 

Graustein, William C, 58, 64, 74, 

Great Depression, 95, 119, 195, 2i7 
Great War. See World War I 
Greenwood, loe, 106 
Greer, Nelson, 106 
Griffis, LeVan, 173, 197 
Grob, Alan, 204 
Guerard, Albert L., 57, 61, 64, 66, 67, 

96, 113 
Guernsey, Frank, 131 
"Guidance." See Hazing 
Gymnasium, 29, 156, 168. See also 

Autry Court 

Hadamard, lacques, 99 

Hall Committee, 50, 53, 115, 121, 

Haltom, Lee, 71 
Hamman Foundation, 173 
Hamman Hall, 173, 209 
Hansen, Fred, 195 
Hanszen College, 183, 187. See also 

West Hall 
Hanszen, Harry Clay, 137, 139, i4V 

168, 169 
Hargrove, Iim, 157 
Hargrove, Marion, 157 
Hams, Chick, 167 
Harris Gully 27, 127, i53 
Harry Clay Hanszen College. See 

Hanszen College 
Hartsook, Arthur ]., 95, 217 
Hawes, Raymond P., 82 
Hawley I. W., 85, 87 
Hazing, 53, II 3- 1 5, 116, 126, 127, 

159, 164, 187 
Health and physical education, 

department of, 206. See also 

Physical education, department of 
Heaps, Claude, 48, 58, 59, n^, 124, 

150, 160 
Heisman, lohn W., 104-6, 112, 116, 

123, 129 
Hell Week, 164-65, 187 
Hemphill, Rosalie, no 
Henry, Bill, 167 
Hermann, George W., 26 
Hermann Park, SS, 114 
Herting, E. W., Ir., los 



Hess, Jake, 121, 131 
Hess, Wilbur, i ji 
Hewitt, Bowe Davis, 127 
Higginbotham, Sanford, 186, 203, 

Hill, Albert Ross, 17, 18 
Hill, King, 19s 
Hinckley, Bert, 103 
History, endowed chair in, 169 
Hjertberg, Ernie, 129 
Hodges, John E., 149 
Hofheinz, Roy, i 37 
Hogg, Will, 9S 
Hohenthal, Lionel, 81 
Hohcnthal Scholar, 81 
Hole, Frank, 204 
Holt, Orren, 12, 13 
Homecoming, 102, 153, 193, 216 
Honor Code, 129 
Honor Council, so, 81, 121, 128 
Honor societies, national, 127. See 

also Phi Beta Kappa 
Honor system, so 
Honors course, 61-62 
Houston Chronicle. 49, 83, 86, 98, 

Houston, city of, i, 2, 29, 218 
Houston Endowment, Inc., 182 
Houston Ministers' Alliance, 83-84 
Houston Philosophical Society, loo 
Houston Post, 18, S3, 8s, 86, 9s 
Houston Press, 12s, 194 
Houston, William Vermillion, 142, 

143, 144-46, 149, 161, 163, 170, 

171, 173, 174, 179, 183, 184, 193, 

197, 198, 203, 204, 213, 216, 218 
Howton, Bill, 19s 
Hudson, John, 195 
Hughes, Arthur L., S7, S9, 70, 94 
Humanities, 61, 173, 190, 204, 207, 

Humble Oil & Refining Co., stock 

in, 143 
Humble, Weldon, 167 
Humphrey, Herbert K., s8 
Huxley, Julian S., 4, 46, s7, S9, 61, 

70, 83, 99, 124, I2S 

Memories, 63 

Illig, Carl, 106 

Inauguration ceremonies, 143, 21s 

Indenture, deed of, 11, 201 

Inflation, 94 

"Institute" (term), 18, 24, 196, 197, 

218. See also Rice Institute 
Inter-College Council, 183, i8s 
Intramural sports, 102, 13s 
Investments, 119, 137, 140, 169, 218 
Isle, Walter, 204 
Ivy, lohn, 169 

lames A. Baker College. See Baker 

lohn. Marguerite, 80 

lohnson, Francis E., 4 s 

Johnson, Gaylord, ios-6, 129, 130, 

Johnson, Kosse, 195 

von Johnson, Kurt, 133 

Johnston, Robert, 19 s 

Jones, Charles, 13-14 

Jones College, 182 

Jones, Henry, 99 

Jones, Jesse H., 108, 144 

Jones, Mrs. Jesse H. See Mary Gibbs 

Jones, Mary Gibbs, 182-83 

Jordan, David Starr, 66 

Journal of Southern History, 172 

Journals, 6 s 
See also Journal of Southern 
History-, Rice Institute 
Pamphlet: Rice University 
Studies: Studies in English 

Jungman, Frank, 80 

Kalb, Hildegarde Elizabeth, si, S2 

Kalb, Ervin F., 52, 117 

Keith-Wiess Geological Laboratories, 

Kelley, Allie Autry, is6 
Kennedy, John F., 212 
Kilpatrick, John, 149 
King, Boyd, 19s 
King, Rufus, 19s 
Kinney, Bob, 131, 167 
Kirby John H., 108 
Kirkland, William A., 143 
Kittredge, George Lyman, 12 s 
Kitts, Jimmy, 129, 132 
Knapp, Carl M., 136, 138, 144 

Kobayashi, Riki, 172 
Kolenda, Konstantin, 172 
Kotch, Clara Margaret Mohr, 171, 

Lady Geddes Prize, 99 

Lance, Don, 19s 

Landre, Louis, 214 

Lane, Sarah, 65, 73, 122, 171, 182 

Lankford, Raymond, 164 

Lassig, Oswald, 42 

Lear, Floyd Seyward, 83, 9s, 217 

Lecturers, visiting, 98, 125 

Lectures, public, 57, 96. See also 
University Extension Lectures 

Lectureships, 81, 169 

Lee's Owls, 129 

Leifeste, A. A., Jr., 149 

Leland, Thomas W, 202 

Leon Springs, 70, 72 

Leray, Jean, 2 1 s 

Les Hiboux, s2 

de Lesseps, Ferdinand, 42 

Letscher, Ed, i 31 

Levi-Civita, T., 12s 

Lewis, Edward S., 149 

Liberal arts. See Humanities 

"Librarian" (title), iso 

Library, is, 31, 64-6S, 68, 121, 140, 
141, 143, ISO, 168, 173, 203 
budget for, 6s, 120, 200 
director of, i so 
expansion of, 200, 202 
location of, 6 s 

Lillard, Roy E., 71 

Lindsey, Marion, 103 

Lingle, Roy P., s7 

Link, J. W, 108 

Literary Council, 163 

Literary societies, 51, ns, 129, 159, 
163, 182, 193, 209. See also names 
of nidividual organizations 

Lombardi, Cesar M., 11, 14- is, 119 

Lovett, Adelaide, 4s 

Lovett, Edgar Odell, i, 17-23, 2S, 44, 
48, 49, 50, 58, 60, 66, 70, 78, 82, 
83, 87, 94, 100, 1 10, 1 18, 1 19, 120, 
122, 123, 124, 125, 129, 130, 134, 
136, 139, 141, 143, 144, 14.S, 159, 
167, 171, 178, 19s, 196, 197, 203, 
217, 218 



Lovett, Mrs. Edgar Odcll. Sec Mary 

Ellen Lovett 
Lovett Hall, 146, iso, iy6, 216. .St-t- 

also Administration Building 
Lovett, Henry Malcolm, 4v 197, 2M 
Lovett, Laurence Alexander, 4 s 
Lovett, Mary Ellen, 21, 22, 4s, sy 
Loewenheim, Francis, 204 
Lowe, Alma L., 205 
Lummis, Frederick R., M. D., 14 v 


McAshan, lames E., 11, is, i'\ 44, 

McBride, Guy T., 149, 170, itS, 179, 

182, 187 
McCann, Samuel G., s8, S^j, 92, 129, 

14s, 161, 171, 189, 197, 217 

McCants, lohn T., 4, 4s, S7, 60, 74, 
76, 82, 83, 108, 112, 119, 121, 129, 

131, 14s, 171, 217 

McCauley, lohn, 1 30 
McClenahan, Howard, 17-18 
McEnany, Michael, 171 
Mackenzie, Donald, 198, 204, 208 
Mackey, Louis, 202 
McKillop, Alan D., 9s, 12s, 141. i4''\ 

197, 204, 213, 217 

MacLane, Gerald R., 149 
McNeely, Holmes, 193 
McVey, William M., 153 
Maegle, Dicky, 19 s 
Maeterlinck, Maurice, 99 
Magee, I. W., 167 
Malmberg, Charles, 16 s 
Manaker, Fred R, 71 
Mandelbrojt, Szolem, 99, 149 
Mann, Leslie, 103 
Marching Owl Band, 19 v See also 

Markham, lames R, 52 
Marsh, Thad, i7i, 172 
Martino, Tony, 60, 129, 1^9 
Mary Ellen Lovett Literary Society, 

Mary Gibbs lones College for 

Women. See Jones College 
Masters, college, 180, 182, 183, i8s 
Masterson, Harris, Ir., 108 

endowed chair in memory of, 169 

Masterson, William H., 149, 171, 

173, 1*^3, 1S4, 197 
Math 100, 48, so, 90, 102, 108, 147, 

160, 189, 193, 20s, 208 

department of, 45, 102, 149 

graduate programs in, 200 

majors in, 148 
Matriculation, 47 
Matriculation address, 47-48 
May Fete, iio, 127, is 7, 162 
Mead, Margaret, 21s 
Meagher, lack, 106, 129 
Mechanical Laboratory, 36, 58 
Memories. See Huxley, lulian 
Menorah Society, si, 84 
Merwin, lohn, 172 
Meyer, Henrich K. E. M., 12s, 13s 
Military, routine of, 1 3 s 
Miller, I. R, 127 
Miller, Ralph, 130 
Mills, Maurine, 80 
Monsanto, grants from, 170 
Moore, Harvin C, 136, 174 
Moraud, Marcel, 9s, 108 
Morehead, lames, Ir., 149, i7i 
Monson, Samuel Eliot, 125 
Morris, Dick, 131 
Morrow, Clara, 181 
Morse, Philip M., 141 
Moseley, Dale, 19s 
Mosle, Paula Meredith, 171, 180, 181 
Muir, Andrew Forest, 36, 129, 172 
Mailer, Hermann ]., s8 
Murphy Ralph, 167 
Music, school of, 169. 5ee also 

Shepherd School of Music 

NASA. See National Aeronautics and 

Space Administration 
NROTC. See Naval Reserve Officers' 

Training Corps 
Nathan, William Max, 52 
National Aeronautics and Space 

Administration, 200 
National Collegiate Athletic 

Association, 104, los 
Naval Reserve Officers' Training 

Corps, 127, 134, 13s, 203 
Navy, U. S., 13s, 146, 161, i6s 

Neely, less Claiborne, 132, 142, is 6, 

i6s, 167, 194 
Nelson, William, 172 
Nevins, Allan, 214 
Nicholas, Henry O., 9s, 129, 130 
Nielsen, Niels, 172 
Nonsectanamsm, is, 27, 84, 174 
Norbeck, Edward. 204 
Nunn, Stayton, 12^ 

OWLS. See Owen Wister Literary 

Olga Keith Literary Society, 163 
Oliver, Henry, 136 
Opening ceremonies, i-io, 21, 23, 

43, 212, 21 s 
Orange Bowl, 167 
Orientation, freshman, 187, 190 
Orphans' institute, 11 
Owen, Mrs. Kenneth Dale, 193 
Owen Wister Literary Society, s i, 

Owl Literary Society [Debating 

Club), SI, IIS 
Owl, the (store), 108 
Owls, the (team name), S3 

PALS. See Pallas Athene Literary 

Pallas Athene Literary Society, si, 

Palmer Memorial Church, no 
Pamphlet. Rice Institute. See Rice 

Institute Pamphlet 
Parish, lohn, i7i 
Parker, |im, 19s 
Parsons, David, 172, 173 
Pat Quinn's Rice Owls Orchestra, 

Patrick, Albert T, 13-14 
Patterson, Charles H., 71 
Pattie, Frank A., jr., 9s, 124-2S 
Peden, Edward A., 119 
Perkins, Sallie Shepherd, 169 
Pershing, K'hn |., 98-99 
Peyre, Henri M., 21 s 
Pfeifter, Paul E., 149 
Phi Beta Kappa, 118, 127 
Phi Lambda Upsilon, 117, 127 
Phillips, Gerald C, 149, 198 



Philosophy and rehgious thought, 

endowed chair in, 169 
Physical education 

program in, 106 

degree in, 107, 124 

department of, 102, 106, 124, is6 

majors in, 148 

See also Health and physical 
education, department of 
Physics amphitheater, 60, 124, 173 
Physics Building, 60, 146, 150 
Physics, department of, 96 
Pi Delta Phi, 127 
Pickard, |ohn B., 172 
Pierce, George R, |r., 173 
Pierce and Pierce, 173 
Pitzer, Kenneth Sanborn, 185, 192, 

197-200, 201, 202, 203, 204, 208, 

209, 215, 216, 218 
Plan, architectural, 28 
Poem, inaugural, 5 
Pollard, William G., 215 
Potter, David M., 123 
Pound, Joseph H., s8, 112 
Powell, |ohn, 99 
Pratt Institute, 16 
Prclog, Vladimir, 214 
Premedical studies, 148 
President, 16-20, 21, 119, 141, 146, 

house of, 29, 140, 142, 153, 168 

See also Edgar Odell Lovett; 
William Vermillion Houston; 
Kenneth Sanborn Pitzer 
Princeton University, 21, so, 178 
Professional schools, 200 
Promotions, faculty, 61, 96, 122, 139 
Provost, 171 

classes in, 124-25 

department of, 95 
Publications, student, 121, 17s, 193 

See also Campanile: The Rice 
Owl: Thresher. 

R Association, 131, 136 

RI, 162 

ROTC. See Reserve Officers' 

Training Corps 
Rabson, Thomas, 204 

Racial discrimination, 15, 201, 202 

Rally Club, 112, 163 

Raphael, Emanuel, 11, 14, 16, 19, 119 

Rath, R. lohn, 204 

Rather, J. T, Ir., 177 

Ravel, Maurice, 100 

Ray Robert H., 169 

Rayzor Hall, 205, 216 

Rayzor, J. Newton, 136, 169, 170, 

173, 175, 179, 180, 197, 200, 204, 

Read, Clark P., 149, 202 
Reagan, Taylor M., 74, 7S, 79 
Red, Ed, 19 s 
Red, George, 197 
Red, Hattie Lei, 49 
"Red scare," the, 84 
Reed Roller Bit Company, stock in, 

Registrar, 83, 171 
Reid, John I., 214 
Reid, Kit, 129, 157 
Reid's Night (Knight) Owls, 129 
Reinke, Edwm E., 58 
Religion, place of in university, 84 

See also Nonsectarianism 
Research Days, 170 
Research Sponsors, 170 
Reserve Officers' Training Corps, 71, 

74, 78, 81, 82, 134, 135, 165 
Residence halls, 28-29, 36, 50, S3, 
72, 115, 121, 135, 140, 153, 173/ 
178, 200 

women's, 28, 181-82 

See also Colleges and names of 
individual residence halls and 
Reynolds, F. Fisher, 136 
Rice Alumni News. 129 
Rice Associates, 215, 216. See also 

Rice Institute Associates 
Rice, Benjamin Botts, 15, 119, 125, 

139, 141, 143 
Rice, Elizabeth Baldwin, 11, 12 
Rice Engineering Show, no- 1 1 
Rice Engineophyte Society, 127 
Rice, Frederick Allyn, 11, is, 60 
Rice Institute Associates, 170 
Rice Institute (name), 69. See also 

Rice Institute Pamphlet, 5, 66, 69, 

102. See also Rice University 

Rice Institute Research Sponsors, 

Rice, Margaret Bremond, 1 1 
Rice Memorial Student Center, 

174-77, 209, 216 
"Rice myth," the, 207-8 
Rice Owl. The, no, 129 
Rice Progressive Party, 133 
Rice Stadium, 156. See also Stadium 
Rice, William Marsh, 5, n, 12-14, 
15, 22, 125, 136, 201 

monument to, 216 ii-*' ~ •^ ' 
Rice, William MarshTlr., is, 16, 19, 

1 19, 122, 125, 136, 138 
Rice University (name), 69, 197 
Rice University Chorus, 216 
Rice University Studies, 66 
Riceoman Literary and Debating 

Society, SI, 115 
"Rice's Honor" (song), no, 210 
Richards, Charles R., 17, 18 
Richardson, Alfred S., n, is 
Richter, George Holmes, 123, 13s, 

141, 146, 170, 173, 191, 196, 203 
Rimlinger, Gaston, 204 
Rincon oil field, 137, 140, 143, is3, 

Rincon Pipe Line Company, 137 
Risser, J. R., 149 
Rockwell, lames W., 12s 
Rockwell lectureship, 125 
Rodgers, lack, 167 
Roe, Herbert N., 70 
Rohrschach, Harold, 172 
Rondelet, 162, 185, 209 
Roosevelt, Franklin D., 122 
la Rose, Pierre de Chaignon, 37 
Rote, Tobin, 167, 195 
Rothgeb, Claude, 106 
Russ, Carl, 167 
Russell, Henry N., 99 
Russian civil war, 84 
Ryan, Frank, 19s 
Ryon Laboratory, 205 
Ryon, Lewis B., 141, 146, 205 





Saints, patron, ^7, 42 
Sakowitz, Simon, loS 

deans', 85 

faculty, 4S, 94, yi, 104, io«, 120, 
122, 124, 1^1, Mg, 140, 168, 202, 
■ football coach's, los 

presidents', 17, 19, 4S, 142 
Sallyport, 28, 51, 88, 177 
Sallyport (magazine), 196, iy7 
"Sallyport 100," 50 
Sammy the Owl, S3, S^i, 112, 158, 

Sammy's (snack bar), 17s 
Sanders, I'aul, 1 3 1 
Sarah Lane Literary Society, 163 
Sass, Ronald, 172 
Savage, Catherine Hill, 203 
Scholarships, 81, 105, iis, n^\ 140, 

146, 168, 170, 173, 191, 201 
Schuhmacher, lohn, 156 
Schunck, Fritz, 195 
Schwinger, Gene, 19 s 

emphasis on, 18, 23, 2S, fn, 218 

graduate programs in, 200 

majors in, 148 
Science-engineering, 147, 148, I'^o 

women in, 206 
Scott, Harry Alexander, 108 
Scott, James H., 127 
Scott, limmie, 129 
Scott, John T., 8s, 119, M>^, n9, 141, 

Seaborg, Glenn T, 215 

Seaman, Ed, 1 31 

Scars, Peter Gray, 66, no 

Self -Study. 206, 208 

Semicentennial, 212-18 

Senior Dance, 209 

Senior Follies, 162 

Shannon, Claude E., 21s 

Shannon, loscph R., in, 

Sharp, Estellc B., 81 

Sharp Lectureship in Civics and 

Philanthrophy 81, 9s, 99 
Sharrar, Lee M., 122 
Shell Oil, 170 
Shclton, Fred, 9 s 

Shepherd School ot Music, 173 

Shield, otfieial, -^7 

Shipley, Arthur, yg 

Sidis, William ]., s« 

Simpson, John 1^., 21 3 

Sims, lames R., 149, 171, 184, iot, 

Site, selection of, 18, 26 

Slater, lean Miriam, 128 

Slater, |ohn C, 141 

Slaughter, |ohn W., gs, 124 

Slime Ball, 116 

Slime Parade, 116, 127, iS9, 164, 187 

"Slimes" (name), sv Sec also Hazing 

Smiley, William, 106 

Smith, Dan, |r., 106 

Social sciences, 204 

Song Fcst, 1 8 s 

Song, official, iio, 210 

Sophomore Ball, 1 16 

Sororities, prohibition against, si, 

IIS, 163 
South Hall, 180. See also Residence 

halls; Will Rice College 
South, Ira, 71 
Southern Association of Colleges and 

Secondary Schools, admission into, 

Southwest Conference, 103, los, 

106, 107, 130, 1 6s, igs, 202, 206 
Space sciences, department of, 204 
Spence, Dale, 19 s 
Sports. See Athletics and names of 

individual athletic activities 
Squire, Charles F., 149 
Stadium, 29, 12s, 131-U, iS3, 167. 

See also Rice Stadium 
Stancliff, Fred, 106 
Standish, William M., S2 
Stanford University, gs 
Staub and Rather, 141, iS3 
Steen, Frank, 130 
Stein, Gertrude, statue of, 193 
Stratford, Sara, so, 60, 122 
Student advisory system, 203 
Student Association, 77, 80, 1 14, 

US, 121, 164, 184, 187 
Student center, 173. See also Rice 

Memorial Student Center 
Student Council, 82, iis, 116, 164, 

179, 183, 186 

Student Senate, 184 

cynicism of, iyo-93 

graduate, 93, 159, 160, 200 

home towns of, 48 

honors, 61-62 

number of, 121 

out-of-state, 92, 207 

out-of-town, 121, 189 

Texas resident, 92 

transfer, 90, 93 
Students' Army Training Corps, 

81-82, 83 
Studies in English Literature. 172 
Stussi, Fritz, 214 
Sugar Bowl, 194 
Suman, Don, 19 s 
Superior Oil, 170 
Sylvester, Leche, i 30 
Szent-Gyorgyi, Albert, 214 

Taft, William Howard, 99 

Talmage, Roy B., 149, 183, 197 

Tape. 7S-77, 82, 83 

Tau Beta Pi, 127 

Taylor, Henry Osborn, 118 

Technical school, idea of, 24 

Ten Year Plan, 203 

Tennis Club, S2 

Tennis, varsity, 167 

Tenure policy 61, 123-24, 203, 204 

Texas Department of Education, 67 

Thomas, I. D., 171, 123 

Thomson, Sir George P., 214 

Thresher. 32, 74, 7 S. 77, 80, 82, 98, 
104, los, no, 112, IIS, 11'^. 121, 
126, 129, 132, 134, IS7, is8, 161, 
163, 164, i8s, 186, 197, 207, 208 

Thucydides, 42 

Tidden, lohn Clark, 96 

Tillett, Henry A., no, in 

Todd, Anderson, 172 

"Toonerville trolley," 49 

Torrens, Mary lane, 122 

Town and Country Apartments, 181 

Toynbec, Arnold, 213, 216 

Track, varsity, 36, 106, 167 

Traditions, student, 108, 116, IS7 

Traffic, regulation of, ni-12, 177 

Trustee Distinguished Professor, 
position of, 204 



Trustee emeritus, position of, 143 
Trustees. Set' Board of Trustees 
Tsanoff, Radoslav Andrea, 58, 96, 98, 

108, 125, 204, 213, 217 
Tuition, 92, 95, 121, 122, 135, 191, 

200, 201, 202 
Turner, Richard B., 172 
Turpin, lack, 167 

Uhrig, L. v., 124 

Ulricfi, Floyd E., 123 

"Uncle [upe," i s 3 

Underwood, |ohn, 103 

Union Carbide, 170 

Universe (sculpturel, 173 

"University" (term), 19s, 196, 218 

See also Rice University 
University Extension Lectures, 

65-66, 83 
University, idea of, 18, 24-25. See 

also "University" 

V-12 students, 134, 13s, 165 
Valley Pipe Line Company, 137 
Van Dyke, Henry, 5,22 
Van de Graaff accelerator. See 

Vandiver, Frank, 172 
Varsity sports. See Athletics and 

names of individual athletic 

Veterans of Future Wars, 132 
Viner, lacob, 214 
Virginia Cleveland Literary Society 


Walker, Malcolm, 195 

Wallace, Bill, 130 

Wann, Trenton, 161 

Watkin, William Ward, 45, 64, 100, 

103, 105, 106, 108, 132, 141, 145, 

171, 217 
Watson, Joe, 167 
Watts, Grace Leake, 216 
Weber, Charles F., 26 
Wecter, Dixon, 144 
Weems, F. Carrington, 22 
Weiser, Harry B., 58, 96, 122, 124, 

127, 129, 132, 145, 170, 2X7 

West Hall, 36, 60, 180, 183. See also 

Hanszen College 
Whiting, George, 95 
Whittington, Harmon, 169, 170 
Wierum, Frederic, 204 
Wiess College, 183, 187. See also 

Wiess Hall 
Wiess Hall, 153, 178, 180. See also 

Wiess College 
Wiess, Harry C, 108, 137, 138, 139, 
140, 142, 143, 144, I S3, 168, 169, 

endowed chair in memory of, 171 
Wiess, Mrs. Harry C. See Olga Keith 

Wiess, Olga Keith, 169, 171 
Wilford, I.M., 136 
Wilhoit, lames, 172, 204 
Will, forged, 13 
Will Rice College, 183, 187. See also 

Residence halls; South Hall 

Williams, George G., 95, 161 
Williams, lames "Froggy," 167 
Williams, Robert P., no 
Wilson, Harold A., 44, 48, S7, 61, 64, 

70, 94, 96, 98, 104, 108, 113, 120, 

123, ISO, 213, 217 
Wilson, Woodrow, 17, 18, 19, 22, S7, 

70, 178 
Wischmeyer, Carl R., 123, 183 
Wolcott, Fred, 131, 1A7 

number of, 90, i 39 

position of, 47, 49-50,^v n^ 

out-of-town, 206-7 
Women's Hall Committee, 179 
Women's Council, 81, 127, 163 
Woods, Roberta, 127 
World War I, 69, 70, 82, 83 
World War II, 127, 132, 134, 141, iS7, 

IS 9, 19s, 218 
Wortham, Gus S., 143, 169 
Wyatt, Edwin, 161 

Yagi, Sakae, 213 

Yankee Stadium, 200 

Yell leaders. See Cheerleaders 

Yerges, Howard F., 103 

Young Men's Christian Association, 

SI, 84, IIS 
Young Women's Christian 

Association, 51, 84, iis 

Zindler, Marvin, 194